I am a little grumpy in the morning and it’s not because I am tired. One of the benefits to being a freelancer is that I can sleep until I am not tired anymore. So, what is it?
I got a phone call this morning from a Living Social representative. I had a photography class deal posted on Living Social a few months ago. She says that she has a voucher holder on the other line who wants to come in to redeem their class voucher. “The class has expired”, I told her. “He called and left a voicemail the day before expiration. Spaces were filled anyway.” I explained.
The customer is always right, right? Well, in this case, the customer was a procrastinator. And, in my mind, the customer wasn’t really my customer yet. They were Living Social’s problem as far as I was concerned.
After I hung up the phone I realized that I did not do much to try to fix the situation. I also noticed that my tone was a little harsh when I was speaking to the Living Social rep.
I think I was snappy because my brain wasn’t ready to receive any external information. In fact, my brain is most active just before and a little after I wake up. I feel like the phone call or any other distraction is interrupting my precious thought time. My best ideas come to me at the moment just before I wake. That place between consciousness and the dream world. In this place there are no limitations and anything is possible. For a creative, this place is heaven and anyone who messes with that gets the full force of my wrath! (My wrath is not really that wrathful) So, what have I learned from this? I think it is to not do anything in the morning until I am ready. This means no emails and no phone calls until I fully regain consciousness. This may sound funny but how many out there have answered a phone or read an email from your mobile device in bed while still half asleep? Don’t worry… I’ll wait.
Please note the crossed-out paragraphs above. I talked to Jamaya about this blog post and she set me straight. Everything that is lined-through is a ‘bunch of bull’.
She reminded me that I had already made up my mind about Living Social classes weeks ago. I didn’t like the idea of teaching beginners. Truth is they didn’t really need me. They could have figured out how to use their camera through the owner’s manual. In my mind, I thought I would be giving them some useful photo theory but they didn’t care. They just wanted to know what the buttons did on their camera.
The intermediate students were a different story though. I enjoyed working with them and I got an opportunity to learn some new lessons myself.
So, what did I learn from this? I think I need to have an intense screening process to decide who would benefit from a workshop. I have a feeling that I will be turning a lot of people down. There is a new market that Living Social is aware of. I call it the ‘people-who-just-bought-a-great-camera-that-takes-good-pictures-and-want-to-be-the-next-Richard-Avedon-without-doing-the-work’ market. I am not interested in stealing these people’s money.
Sites like Living Social do not work for business like mine. Like most businesses, Living Social is all about the numbers but I am not in this for the money. I am not even in the teaching business now that I think about it. I am in the business of helping people. Even if helping means turning their money down and telling them to read their owner’s manual.