• The Dumbass Guide to Being a Professional

I am literally amazed that some people make money at what they do. Seriously. I just sometimes wonder where people’s heads are at… my guess? Somewhere shoved tightly up their rump.

So, here are some of the basics to not being an idiot, when it comes to owning your own business (this includes freelancers.)

1. Write in complete sentences. Use punctuation and capital letters. It’s not that hard. I should hope that you know basic grammar skills if you plan on juggling everything that comes with a business. Worst case scenario? Use spell check, and Word has a nice grammar editor as well.

2. Try not to cuss out your clients.

3. When discussing business matters on the phone; try not to belittle, degrade, or berate the person who is hiring you.

4. If English is the primary language of your business… use it.

5. Study the field that you intend on going into. It’s amazing to me how many “professionals” know nothing about what it is they do.

6. Be polite.

7. If you say you are going to be somewhere, deliver something, or do something… for goodness sakes… DO IT!

8. Use contracts. And when drafting a contract, try to use the same steps as you would in an email. (See points 1 and 4)

9. Do not become friends with your clients on Facebook and then talk shit about them. In fact, don’t talk shit about your clients period.

10. When using social media; follow the same steps as the rules above, and don’t be a douche.

Sadly, I’ve witnessed all this… I’ve seen photographers publicly bash models they’ve worked with, I’ve seen agents belittle their own models on Facebook, I’ve read emails that could have been written better if a 6 year old typed them up, and I’ve been stood up, unpaid, or not been delivered photographs I’ve been promised. I don’t know how this works for people, but I can’t see their careers going much farther than their poor reputations.

I’m sure my common-sensical readers have experienced some awesome examples of unprofessionalism, and I want to hear them! So please… Dish!!

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