i got fired today!

Discussion in 'Community' started by zimv20, Jul 29, 2004.

  1. macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    chicago
    #1
    ...and i couldn't be happier about it.

    i do a little sys admin stuff on the side. in may, a friend working at a small business (3 PCs) recommended me to the owner. i told her my rate, she approved, and i had a look at the machines (there were a variety of symptoms).

    two of the machines were badly infected (no anti-virus installed, everyone using the admin account). i bought two copies of Norton AV, couldn't get them to install, recommended new machines (cheaper than me fixing those two very old ones, plus the install CDs were long gone). i never got the go-ahead to repair or replace them. i did some other things, too, like phone support and some networking.

    at the end of may, i submitted my invoice for hours worked and for the Norton copies. guess what -- it got ignored.

    cut to today, when i demanded my invoice be paid. very unprofessionally -- in front of customers -- she complained the PCs were "still slow," that the invoice i handed to her (she lost my first one) was $200 higher than the other (it wasn't, it was a photocopy of the original) and all but accused me of stealing some ethernet cables (not only did i not, but i'm stuck w/ two that i bought but never gave to her because they had more than they told me they did).

    finally, she teased me w/ how much more work there was to do, then told me i was too expensive. this actually made me happy, 'cuz i was going to cash the check and drop her as a client anyway. all i said was, "okay."

    i made a mad dash to her bank to cash the check, fearing she was going to put a stop payment on it. but i got the cash! woo-hoo! who wants sushi?
     
  2. Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #2
    Me! Toro & Red Snapper, please!

    Congrats for getting out of that one carrying a sack with a $ on it!
     
  3. Retired

    jefhatfield

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2000
    #3
    being a techie for five years, which is about the longest anyone should do the job and still keep their sanity, i have come across some strange clients

    if they are too cheap to buy new machines, but know they should buy some, then they will be too cheap to pay you what you are worth

    small business/home clients are often cash strapped and though not a fault of their own, there are plenty of teenage sons and daughters, or the whiz kids across the street who should fix their stuff and will do it for free or very cheap

    but for professionals like you and me, the ultra cheap clients like this one you had are not worth wasting our time...it's not that they purposely want to waste our time, it's more that they are not a good fit for a professional techie who should make $25-$75 dollars an hour for a task (or more)

    when i fall and scrape my knee, i go to the school nurse and all is fine...now if i fall and scrape my knee and check into the mayo clinic and then complain about the high bill, then i am not playing in my own league

    your client was not playing in her own league ;)
     
  4. thread starter macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    chicago
    #4
    indeed.

    things looked promising at first. i normally wouldn't take on such a small client, but it was basically a favor for my friend (who has since quit!). what's more, the boss agreed to my rate (which i lowered because of the friend referrel) and apologized the first day for not being in the office to cut me a check.

    "that's okay," i said, "i do invoices at the end of the month."

    live and learn, eh?
     
  5. Administrator

    Doctor Q

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2002
    Location:
    Kepler-452b
    #5
    I'm still waiting to be paid for some contract work done years ago. It was to write a device driver for a small operating system. I studied it and figured out that it couldn't be done for some technical reason. They decided to ignore my invoice because they didn't "get" anything for the time I spent doing the research. It wasn't a big amount, so I didn't pursue it. But word spreads about people and small companies who do this, and it may come back to haunt them someday.
     
  6. thread starter macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    chicago
    #6
    yeah, i'm not even going to bother invoicing her for the time i've worked since. it's not worth the toner :)
     
  7. macrumors 65816

    krimson

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2003
    Location:
    Democratic People's Republic of Kalifornia
    #7
    i did some work for my ex-gf's law office year back, glad it went reasonably well, i too gave her a discounted rate. But that was the last, and i'll never do it again.

    and thanks to zim, i have a grumbling craving for some uni. :mad: :D
     
  8. macrumors 6502

    Foucault

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2002
    Location:
    Pasadena, CA
    #8
    Congratulations, I guess... Tech support can be such a godforsaken job
     
  9. macrumors 6502a

    trebblekicked

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2002
    Location:
    Chicago, IL, USA
    #9
    ah, the life of the self employed. well played.


    what's your sushi place? i'm a nohana guy (belmont/broadway) cheap and awesome.
     
  10. macrumors 601

    virividox

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2003
    Location:
    Manila - Nottingham - Philadelphia - Santa Barbar
    #10
    i want yellow tail, himachi, and unagi pleaaaase
     
  11. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2004
    Location:
    So. Cal
    #11
    Steak please not fish. :)
     
  12. thread starter macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    chicago
    #12
    agh, the cursed place with the awning!

    just kidding. my three places are New Toyko (right across the street from nohana, i think), Sai Cafe (sheffield/armitage) and Tombo (lincoln/melrose).
     
  13. Administrator emeritus

    Mudbug

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2002
    Location:
    North Central Colorado
    #13
    I'm a California Roll kinda guy - fishy, but not REALLY fishy.
    Plenty of soy sauce, and wasabi of course.
     
  14. thread starter macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    chicago
    #14
    btw, that's the funniest thing i've read all day.
     
  15. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2002
    #15
    What's more stylish?
    Fired or Quitting?
     
  16. macrumors 68040

    pseudobrit

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Jobs' Spare Liver Jar
    #16
    Fired as a default is more stylish, but you can make quitting way cooler if you're creative.
     
  17. thread starter macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    chicago
    #17
    i tend to not burn bridges when i quit, so i've missed out on that fun. but i think this was the first i've been fired since '81, so it was kind of special. still, i was looking forward to my first dropping of a client.
     
  18. macrumors 603

    janey

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2002
    Location:
    sunny los angeles
    #18
    well you said it was a sysadmin job sorta kinda thing...
    so happy sysadmin appreciation day ;)

    what a coincidence :D

    http://sysadminday.com , iirc.
     
  19. thread starter macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    chicago
    #19
    thank you!

    i didn't even know it existed. i think it should be recognized on a saturday, seems more apropos.
     
  20. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 25, 2004
    #20
    It sounds to me like you ripped her off. If you didn't actually fix her machines, why should she pay you? It's pretty unprofessional of you to drop her as a client after your first paycheck, so I'm not sure why you're proud of your behavior. Perhaps it's just me, I'm one of those people who finish what they start and get paid based on the end result.

    Mike LaRiviere
     
  21. macrumors 68040

    pseudobrit

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    Jobs' Spare Liver Jar
    #21
    Go back and read it again.
     
  22. macrumors 68030

    jared_kipe

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2003
    Location:
    Seattle
    #22
    I prefer teriyaki or yakisoba.... mmm noodles..
     
  23. thread starter macrumors 601

    zimv20

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    Location:
    chicago
    #23
    because i was working on a time and materials basis. i.e. i get paid for the hours i work.

    i was perfectly happy to fix the machines, but it would have taken a long time and i wanted to get permission for that first (that is professional behavior, btw).

    she made a habit of not returning my phonecalls. she lost my invoice. she actually moved the business without telling me (imagine my surprise when i stopped by and found an emptied office). i was going to drop her because she was a horrible client and i don't need that kind of stress. part of my payment, btw, was money for a couple copies of Anti-virus which i put on my credit card. the s/w was her in possession, so that's akin to a 3 month loan from me to her.

    i mention time and materials. i could have also worked under a contract which would have stipulated a price for a project accomplished. under that scenario, i would have been obligated to get the PCs back to health before getting paid. but that wasn't the contract.
     
  24. macrumors 68000

    Stelliform

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2002
    #24
    .....
     
  25. macrumors 68000

    Stelliform

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2002
    #25
    ....
     

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