The Performance Mentor

Mentor > Work Tips > Are you Working for Free?

Are you Working for Free?


Title: Are you Working for Free?


I love working. It’s part of my spirit and who I am, but doing a favour job and then finding out other people were paid, leaves a funny energy. It can damage relationships and affect your creative flow. We’re all creatives and we just need to pour out our creative juice and be happy because sometimes the politics can kill your vibe, energy and lead to creative blocks. If you’re unfortunate to be in this position, you have two choices to address it or leave it. But let it go and do not let it kill you.

It’s maybe a lesson to learn, or part of your journey. One thing I will say is you will learn from it whether it’s good or bad. It will change you. Every experience does.
I’ve been on jobs where the performers are on different rates based on their agent type. The good agents got the best fees and would not back down while the cowboy agents took any rate just to get a working credit for their company. Agencies like that are no good, because they will take their 20% or more of your pennies and before you know it you’re paying them to work! I personally do not like to be involved in stuff like this as I don’t want any confusion and my name to be associated with these kinds of jobs. But unfortunately this is the world we live in.

Should you find out there is different rates and you choose to work for the same client again, you are the problem not them. Remember people only treated you how you allow them.

Should you keep working with a cowboy agent, you’re the problem, so no moaning. Suck it up and keep working twice as hard.

In truth your agent would agree to different usage per role, beforehand to fit the buyout fee, so maybe your agent has the right fee for your role type? A lot of performers try to upgrade themselves up to a more featured role, which is a very natural, we are human after all.

However, the creative agency still has their set agreed budget for each project. There is no sea of money just waiting to upgrade performers.

Also, please remember you should always get expenses, unless this is a trade of services job where you’re all coming together to produce the job or time for print for models.

Job description changed but not the money

How many times have you heard this, ‘The job description is not matching the agreed money” I think this is something I’ve heard in every industry. Especially in times like this where so many people are doing the same job, as an employee you can get a lot more for your money now.

You need to decide if you need to flag this and have a conversation with the producer if you’re working directly or just mention it to your agent if you’re represented. The truth is every producer is reasonable and they know if things has changed drastically as they would have incurred changes in other departments. Sometimes the whole job changes and it’s a 180 in a completely new direction. Email your concerns and address if there is a new fee or extra payment before doing too much work in this new direction. Example you were the dancer, now you’re the dancer and sole choreographer. You were the choreographer now you’re the creative and choreographer. These all have different fees attached to them, so if you were not informed of this from the beginning just have a word.

Stay blessed
From Natricia aka the Performance Mentor