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Would you work with this client?
Thread poster: Stephanie Mitchel

Stephanie Mitchel  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:03
French to English
Aug 16, 2008

Hello all -

I've recently been referred a client who has written a book and is assigning two chapters apiece to seven different translators. I told him that for private clients new to me, I ask for immediate payment of half the project upon delivery of that half, with completion of the project conditional on that first payment - because I've learned the hard way! - and that it was nothing personal against him, but he is an unknown quantity (whereas he's already got my CV and a recommendation).

His response was indignant, to the effect that he's not going to make any special arrangements with me, he has other translators on hold for those who "default," he's the 10th richest man in the country where he lives, he's a shareholder in his Swiss bank from which he'd be making the payment, etc., and even sent me a photo of himself with a luxury sportscar. Fine for him, but are my terms unreasonable? I have until midnight tonight to make a decision - what would you do?

Many thanks!
Stephanie

[Edited at 2008-08-16 18:30]


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xxxtazdog
Spain
Local time: 23:03
Spanish to English
+ ...
he's already made the decision for you Aug 16, 2008

I wouldn't budge. You gave him your terms, and I think his reaction is over the top. That right there would set my spider senses tingling. If he doesn't accept your terms, that should be the end of the story (you established those terms for a reason, right?).

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ViktoriaG  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 17:03
English to French
+ ...
+ 1 Aug 16, 2008

I completely agree with Cindy.

I would also like to add that if you set your terms and then don't apply them, you can't expect to be perceived as a serious professional. This is something that can play against you - and against the perceived value of your services.

All the best!

[Edited at 2008-08-16 18:56]


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Stephanie Mitchel  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:03
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
True Aug 16, 2008

And I have already withdrawn. I'm sure he will call on the "next in line"...

Thanks again!

Stephanie


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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 22:03
Dutch to English
+ ...
Nice chap ... Aug 16, 2008

Get down to your local sports car dealer now and have a photo taken of yourself next to an even larger car - it's that easy see?

At very best, he's pompous ... putting you on terms to reply by midnight on a Saturday night. Sounds like a lovely character to work for. Never mind the money - let's assume he has it - imagine the headache of working for someone with his type of ego.

Can you imagine his reaction if - heavens forbid - you had to query late payment?


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Stephanie Mitchel  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 17:03
French to English
TOPIC STARTER
Ha! Aug 16, 2008

August can be a slow month and I find myself considering projects I would normally laugh at.

Thanks for reminding me to laugh!

Stephanie


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Christel Zipfel  Identity Verified
Italy
Member (2004)
Italian to German
+ ...
Enjoy August without this kind of customer! Aug 16, 2008

Sure you have a lot of other things to do?
I appreciate your sense of humour and wish you all the best!


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Özden Arıkan  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 23:03
Member
English to Turkish
Tell him... Aug 16, 2008

...that after seeing his car, you decided to ask for the whole amount in advance

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KSL Berlin  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 22:03
Member (2003)
German to English
+ ...
Good riddance Aug 16, 2008

Özden Arıkan wrote:
...after seeing his car, you decided to ask for the whole amount in advance



My thoughts exactly


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xxxXX789  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 23:03
English to Dutch
+ ...
Logic Aug 17, 2008


...that after seeing his car, you decided to ask for the whole amount in advance


You gotta love the logic of some people out there. This client is what - the 10th richest guy in his country? He ain't a citizen of Sealand, is he?

Anyway, if he is that rich, paying in advance shouldn't be easier, especially for such a ridiculously small, trivial amount like the money he owes you.

If someone has issues with payments in advance for services rendered, you can bet that money *is* a problem.

Basically the guy dug his own grave.


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Jenny Forbes  Identity Verified
Local time: 22:03
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
Reminds me of certain long-ago bosses of mine ... Aug 17, 2008

I don't like the sound of him either. What you say reminds me of certain bosses I had in the merchant banking world in years gone by. Spoilt, rich, rude and never satisfied. (I had some good ones too, mind).
If this is his attitude before your relationship even starts, it's a bad omen.
By the way, Loek, Stephanie was not asking to be paid in advance, but to be paid on completion of the first half of the job before embarking on the second, which seems to me perfectly reasonable in the case of a long job (e.g. a book) for a new and untested client.
Unless you're exceptionally keen to do this job for some reason, I'd turn it down if I were you.
Best wishes,
Jenny.


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tinageta  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:03
English to Latvian
+ ...
419 Aug 17, 2008

Stephanie Mitchel wrote:

Hhe's the 10th richest man in the country where he lives, he's a shareholder in his Swiss bank from which he'd be making the payment, etc., and even sent me a photo of himself with a luxury sportscar.

Stephanie

[Edited at 2008-08-16 18:30]


Sounds like the Nigerian scam for me. Especially this picture with a luxury sportscar.


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Sundar Gopalakrishnan
India
Local time: 02:33
English to Tamil
+ ...
419? Aug 17, 2008

What does it mean?

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Lawyer-Linguist  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 22:03
Dutch to English
+ ...
Try googling ... Aug 17, 2008

Sundar Gopalakrishnan wrote:

What does it mean?



419 + Nigeria + scam = answer


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Carla Guerreiro  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 23:03
French to Portuguese
+ ...
Tell him to go to hell! Sep 1, 2008

You won't lose anything by refusing clients like him.

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