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Poll: Have you ever rejected jobs to boost your prestige?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

Mario Chavez (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:30
English to Spanish
+ ...
Do you write a poll question to boost your prestige? Apr 6, 2016

Of course, my title is a joke, like the poll question.

But I have two points to make:

1) How come Proz comes after those of us who step out of boundaries when answering a poll question but lets slide such inane polls? This situation could be interpreted as a comment being subjectively interpreted by Proz. On the other hand, Proz being an American company should know that censorship is strongly frowned upon in America. How about complying with that principle?

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Of course, my title is a joke, like the poll question.

But I have two points to make:

1) How come Proz comes after those of us who step out of boundaries when answering a poll question but lets slide such inane polls? This situation could be interpreted as a comment being subjectively interpreted by Proz. On the other hand, Proz being an American company should know that censorship is strongly frowned upon in America. How about complying with that principle?

2) As my colleagues have pointed out, why would I even think of boosting my prestige by rejecting a job? Wouldn't it be the other way around? Why does this insanely idiotic question is even a poll question on a professional forum? Don't they have Facebook for that?

Sorry, Proz, but you just gave me a very strong reason not to renew my membership next year and beyond.

[Edited at 2016-04-06 13:24 GMT]

[Edited at 2016-04-06 13:24 GMT]
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DZiW
Ukraine
English to Russian
+ ...
It depends Apr 6, 2016

If it'a about rejecting peanuts projects, then I always do;
if it's about some ethic issues, it's no different for me from usual projects;
if it's about 'pressing' clients, then it's but silly, let alone 'improving self-esteem' and other stuff...

Have you ever got your ears frostbitten badly to boost your prestige?


 

Mario Freitas  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 13:30
Member (2014)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
What a method to boost one's prestige!! Apr 6, 2016

If a person does that, it probably means their "prestige" is prety low or they have no idea how to "boost their prestige".
I have refused many jobs for several other reasons, but for prestige purposes?? You must be kidding!


 

Mario Chavez (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:30
English to Spanish
+ ...
Badly frostbitten ears Apr 6, 2016

DZiW wrote:

If it'a about rejecting peanuts projects, then I always do;
if it's about some ethic issues, it's no different for me from usual projects;
if it's about 'pressing' clients, then it's but silly, let alone 'improving self-esteem' and other stuff...

Have you ever got your ears frostbitten badly to boost your prestige?


Putin. Maybe.




 

Gianluca Marras  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 17:30
English to Italian
some people do it Apr 6, 2016

I have a friend, whose father owned a restaurant.
Some days when clients showed up, he said: sorry all tables are reserved.
It was a lie, some days simply the restaurant was empty and there were no reservations, but he used this idea to "suggest" that maybe it was better to reserve a table.
Well he started getting phone calls to book a table.

For translations, in my opinion, it works the other way round.
If you say you are busy, obviously your client will fi
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I have a friend, whose father owned a restaurant.
Some days when clients showed up, he said: sorry all tables are reserved.
It was a lie, some days simply the restaurant was empty and there were no reservations, but he used this idea to "suggest" that maybe it was better to reserve a table.
Well he started getting phone calls to book a table.

For translations, in my opinion, it works the other way round.
If you say you are busy, obviously your client will find another translator, who can be as good as you, better or worse, cheaper or more expensive...
But if the client thinks that translator is good... you can keep your wonderful service for someone else...
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Diarmuid Kennan
Ireland
Local time: 16:30
Member (2006)
Danish to English
+ ...
Yes, I do. Apr 6, 2016

Sometimes I refuse a job, not because the rate is too low, but because I feel that the potential client is treating me disrespectfully, or like an employee that they can issue orders to, or a day-labourer desperate for the work.
In this case, I like to remind the client that I don't need them - they need me. So, to answer the question, sometimes a client needs to be reminded that they should negotiate as equals.


 

Fiona Grace Peterson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 17:30
Member
Italian to English
Social experiment? Apr 6, 2016

Julian Holmes wrote:

Ho, hum. Another obscure and indecipherable hit-and-run poll from 'Anonymous'. Sigh


Maybe this is some sort of social experiment, like the Facebook profile badges? See how many people answer despite not understanding the question?

I'm gonna stick my neck out and answer Forty Two. That should cover all the bases.


 

Balasubramaniam L.  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 22:00
Member (2006)
English to Hindi
+ ...
SITE LOCALIZER
What the question means Apr 6, 2016

I think what the poll is asking is, have you ever rejected a job not because of valid reasons such as low rates, etc. but because it was hurtful to your ego, and later regretted it?

I have faced this situation once, so I think I understand what this is about.

I had a client (an agency) for whom I had been doing some work for sometime. It was a large, officious impersonal agency, but the working terms were good. Payments were on time.

Somewhere down the line
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I think what the poll is asking is, have you ever rejected a job not because of valid reasons such as low rates, etc. but because it was hurtful to your ego, and later regretted it?

I have faced this situation once, so I think I understand what this is about.

I had a client (an agency) for whom I had been doing some work for sometime. It was a large, officious impersonal agency, but the working terms were good. Payments were on time.

Somewhere down the line, I thought I could ask them to agree to an increase in rate, as some of my rates had been pegged at a very low level in the initial negotiations.

My request was very incompetently handled by the PM, in a hurtful and insulting manner. In short, he told me in so many words that I was not indispensible to them and they won't raise my rates as they were in line what is reasonable for someone working from a place like India.

I found this very insulting and promptly severed all connection with them and never worked for them again. Looking back, after several years, when I had added more grey hairs on head, and lost quite bit of hair too, I feel that I had acted rather immaturely and petulantly.

We both lost out, the agency lost a good translator, and I lost a reasonably ok client. What caused this zero sum game was prestige (or ego) on both sides.

Have any one else had a similar experience?
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Egmont Schröder  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 17:30
Member (2013)
Chinese to German
+ ...
I did it sometimes Apr 6, 2016

But always along with other reasons, mostly for annoying projects (or customers).

It is a market mechanisms called "Artificial scarcity", and a lot of well-known companies put it into practice: create a scarcity of a good or service even though there is no need for it. So the idea behind is not so absurd.

It turned out that it doesn't work for translations, a lesson I had to learn the hard way.


 

Kuochoe Nikoi-Kotei  Identity Verified
Ghana
Local time: 16:30
Japanese to English
Whaaat.... Apr 6, 2016

Balasubramaniam L. wrote:
My request was very incompetently handled by the PM, in a hurtful and insulting manner. In short, he told me in so many words that I was not indispensable to them and they won't raise my rates as they were in line what is reasonable for someone working from a place like India.

We both lost out, the agency lost a good translator, and I lost a reasonably ok client. What caused this zero sum game was prestige (or ego) on both sides.

Have any one else had a similar experience?

Nah, I wouldn't feel bad not working with anyone who tried to stiff me because of my nationality (and actually had the gall to say so). Move on and don't look back.


 

Edward Potter  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 17:30
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Yes. Apr 7, 2016

Okay, getting past the badly written question, apparently written by a non-native English speaker...

The question seems to be be asking if you ever strategically turn down jobs. In essence, whether you ever play "hard-to-get".

I do it all the time. However, although there is always a primary reason, with this as a secondary reason for rejecting a job. For example, if I have a big project going and in theory I can squeeze another one in, I might turn it down, first, bec
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Okay, getting past the badly written question, apparently written by a non-native English speaker...

The question seems to be be asking if you ever strategically turn down jobs. In essence, whether you ever play "hard-to-get".

I do it all the time. However, although there is always a primary reason, with this as a secondary reason for rejecting a job. For example, if I have a big project going and in theory I can squeeze another one in, I might turn it down, first, because I can't be bothered, and second, to give the image that I am well-employed (which I am).
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Ricki Farn
Germany
Local time: 17:30
Member (2005)
English to German
Works for whole industries Apr 7, 2016

... but only towards direct clients, mostly consumers. Self-employed plumbers, for instance, play "hard to get" as an industry-wide business strategy, and after consistently doing that for a few decades, they can now charge twice the hourly rate that many academics can, without the same investment in their initial qualification.

Doesn't work for translators working with agencies, rarely works for translators working with companies (as opposed to individuals/consumers), and hardly wo
... See more
... but only towards direct clients, mostly consumers. Self-employed plumbers, for instance, play "hard to get" as an industry-wide business strategy, and after consistently doing that for a few decades, they can now charge twice the hourly rate that many academics can, without the same investment in their initial qualification.

Doesn't work for translators working with agencies, rarely works for translators working with companies (as opposed to individuals/consumers), and hardly works for plumbers in dependent employment either, because it will be their boss who uses that strategy rather than themselves.

Source: I know a surprising number of plumbers, and they tell me that the first thing they learn during their apprenticeship is to make potential customers, even repeat customers, wait and fight for their services. After that, they learn how to disassemble a sink.
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Egmont Schröder  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 17:30
Member (2013)
Chinese to German
+ ...
You don't need look too far Apr 10, 2016

It works everywhere, just look at famous brands like Apple, Gucci, Adidas...
They all have the capabilities to flood the market with their products, but they don't because it will ruin the price.
The translation market is special in many areas, maybe it is because of the oversupply due to the digital development.


 
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