I had a chance to recently speak at an event in Cebu organized by Aaron Gleen with Mark Deutch from Happy Garaje and Myka Arnado, three exceedingly talented artists living in Cebu.
The subject was pricing for creatives in Cebu. I have to admit, I was hesitant to go at first as I was slightly concerned that the subject itself was fairly personal. I run a company and, unfortunately, I can’t advertise all over town what everyone gets paid. I can say with full transparency that I wish it was way more, but beyond that, I feel that’s my and my team’s business.
I told Aaron that I can talk about everything but the specifics. This made me feel like I was about to seriously let people down, which was certainly no good reason to agree to speak.
I mean really. Who wants to listen to some guy sitting indian style in a chair who just WILL NOT give it up?
Yet ... there I was.
Happily it was not an issue. My co-panelists essentially had the same view on the subject and the conversation quickly ignited some very valuable tactics for creatives on how to get what they want.
The bottom line is -- it’s complicated.
I know. Another gyp.
I won’t recap the specifics here, but what I will do is copy a section of a great article from Joel Pilger who runs RevThink - a consultancy for creative studios in the USA. His philosophy is one I completely agree with, although his catchy paraphrasing is unique.
It goes like like this.
THE THREE R'S
REEL: will this be a showcase project or win me awards?
RELATIONSHIP: will this client appreciate us, bring us future business or refer us?
REWARD: will we make money on this project?
Here is how you apply them:
If a project meets all three of these requirements, accept the project without hesitation. Get moving. It is going to be a huge success! Decision: YES!
If a project meets two of The Three R’s™, take note. It might be a good fit. But you and your team should manage expectations carefully. Decision: PROBABLY…
If a project meets only one of The Three R’s™, watch out. Accepting this type of project will almost certainly result in a huge mess. Decision: NO.
If a project meets none of The Three R’s™, apply “the fourth R” and run away from the project. And perhaps that client, too. Decision: NO WAY!
- Courtesy Joel Pilger of RevThink
I agree with this. I wish I had read his article previous to the panel discussion because I'm confident that "borrowing" it and then regurgitating in my own unique speaking style (I call it "know it all-ease") would have framed me as genius that night and would have undoubtedly led to rapturous applause. But I hadn't and that's why I'm sharing it now.
That said, when you're starting out, let's face it -- you'll take a job if they're offering you one sneaker.
But think of this as a simple baseline and run with it.
It's smart advice.