The Non-Negotiable Conversation All Creatives Must Have

As a Creator, you're most valuable tool in your arsenal is protecting your energy. While many of us can create just for the sake of creating out of love, love doesn't ensure that you're financially taken care of. 
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[Tweet "Love doesn't ensure that you're financially taken care of."]
In your initial conversation before working on any project or experience, you MUST bring up the aspect of compensation. Even if the project or opportunity is something that you're doing for free (which, if we're honest, can sometimes happens) both parties should be clear on what each is gaining from this exchange. 
It's best to always be vocal about what you're willing to do and not do when discussing the scope of work. Nothing drains you more than spending time - you're most important resource - on a project and not being compensated because you neglected to speak up about it. It's just better to NOT assume these things: 
[Tweet "Reminder: Time is your most important resource. #blkcreatives"]
  • Don't assume that someone is going to pay you, make your demands clear from the start. 
  • Don't assume that because your intentions are good and you do great work, that people will want to pay you.
  • Don't assume that because you've worked with someone before or have a relationship with them, they already know your compensation rules. 
  • Don't assume that people know your situation or circumstances and want to monetarily provide help - it's not anyone's job to take care of you. Compensation is your responsibility. 
  • Don't assume that because you're offering something new (whether it's a new service, new project or you're on a new path altogether) that people will pay for it. 
Think about how much we like free stuff. It's important to remember that no matter what level you're at professionally, you are offering up VALUE each and every time you enter into an agreement. 
RESOURCE: Check out Sakita Holley's #hashtagsandstilettos podcast episode on Negotiation.