3 Responses to “Simple Rule When Asking For a Favor: Don’t Be a Dumbass”


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  1. Amy Rosenberg

    Great article, Avish.
    I have had this sort of thing happen many times when I was working as a freelance storyteller, and only when I had let them talk me into doing it for free, to help a community/charity event. (No mention of my show on the promotional materials, no place or emcee for my show…) Basically, they scheduled me for right after a juggler who had just done a one-hour show, with people sitting on the street. When his show ended right at noon, he said, “Thank you for coming; Goodbye!” Not his fault; there was no emcee. A big crowd of people, tired of sitting on asphalt for an hour, and hungry for lunch, got up and left. Why not — they had no notice that another show was coming up. You can bet, when the event came back around the following year, I didn’t come back.
    In the book “Money Talks,” (p. 70), Alan Weiss says, “The client won’t care if not many people go to hear the $750 speaker, but will personally be in the halls shepherding people into the $7500 investment.”

  2. admin

    You hit the nail on the head Amy. A lot of times you have to work a lot harder when you’re not getting paid. That’s why you have to think hard and plan carefully when doing something for free. Not that I am against pro-bono speaking altogether, but it needs to be either for a) a cause or group I care about and want to donate my time or b) a situation where the quid pro quo and organization is clearly laid out.

    And yeah, I’ve had almost the exact situation you are talking about with the community/charity event. *shudder*

  3. April

    Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your site and wanted to say
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