Recently, one of our freelancers sent me a What’s App asking me if we had any work coming up. Great idea – always good to stay in touch with people that can give you work. He also added a warning that he was going to “up my rate” . This is definitely something you should plan for as your career develops.

As an employer, I’m expecting you to up your rate as you gain experience. I hope it’s not going to be too often I hope it’s by too much. And like he did, I really like it when you tell me in advance.

However, the way he phrased it wasn’t great. He’s a junior member of staff, so still juggling his freelancing with working in a coffee shop. What he said was:

“I recently got a raise at work which means I’d be losing money if I were to take a full day from the cafe to freelance “

improve your rate

Now, this is really the wrong way to tell me you feel you need a raise. Just because you’re doing better at the coffee shop doesn’t have any bearing on your abilities as an animator. We all know you have to make money, just don’t make it about that with your employer.

He could have justified his rate rise merely by the work he’d done over the six months I’d be employing him:

“I’ve now been working for a year commercially, and companies like yours are paying more. So I’m raising my rates for you in parallel with other agencies.”

That’s much more open to me, and makes me value him.

To his credit, he did warn us in advance, rather than doing his work and only finding out when he invoiced that he was more expensive than we planned!

And remember, the only way to get more money is ask for more money!

Gavin Ricketts is a Producer/Director with over twenty year's experience. His courses on finding work in the creative industries has helped hundreds of Film and TV Crew win more work.

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