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5 Passive Aggressive Reminders That Get Freelancers Paid3 min read

November 7, 2016
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5 Passive Aggressive Reminders That Get Freelancers Paid3 min read

Freelancers are a courageous people. We continuously bet on ourselves rather than wait for others to give us what we need. We clear our own paths, we travel the road not taken, we are crusaders with coffee. So when a client doesn’t pay on time (even though we hit our deadlines), it feels like a hard stop. And if you’re using AND CO’s freelance payment tracking, you’ll know exactly when your payments are due.

So, for those tough times while you’re waiting for your freelance payment to arrive in your account, here are some passive aggressive payment reminders that will get you your dollar bills.

Did You Get My Invoice?

This might be the most painfully obvious and most overly used passive aggressive reminder but a good ‘ol “did you get my invoice?” could do the trick. It gives your client the benefit of the doubt while still suggesting to them that they can’t treat their invoicing system like their old AOL accounts* are like a Ronco Rotisserie Infomercial.

You just SET IT AND FORGET IT! It’s the most passive of our passive aggressive payment reminders for freelancers but hey, why fix what isn’t broken?

Send Flowers!

Sugar, spice, and everything sort of nice is when you send flowers with the note that says, “roses are red, violets are blue, it’s the 27th, my payment is overdue.” Man, what a mixed message. And since you haven’t gotten paid, send them the lower cost flowers, just to twist the knife.

Is There A Problem With Your Payment System?

Another passive aggressive staple: asking if there is a problem with their payment system when really, there’s a problem with *cough, cough* them. What a gentle payment reminder freelancers can try by, once again, blaming it on darn technology! Isn’t that what everyone does? It’s also putting the onus on the company which is what you want because you’ve done nothing wrong here. No way, no how.

Wish Them Happy Birthday…A Day Late

If they’re gonna forget to pay you, you’re gonna forget to wish them a happy birthday on their actual birthday. But, when you send them your wishes the next day maybe you’ll add a little note that reads: “Hey, now that you’re a year older, you have a REASON to be forgetful…” or “Don’t blame me for forgetting, I learned it from the best!” Always remember to add a “happy birthday” to the note and they won’t even know what hit ’em. Plus, since it’s not they’re actual birthday, it’s okay to pepper in the passive aggression.

Or You Could Forget The Passive…

While all of these are solid, A+ options, there’s the old standby of following up and blatantly explaining the situation. You’re a businessperson and you know how to get yours. So if you passive aggressive ain’t your thang, then just state your claim. Imagine if companies paid their employees their checks willy nilly, it would be anarchy. You’re career isn’t a hobby and your clients need to know that. So, do YOU! You’re worth it.

*Earlier in the piece, the author says that people “set and forget” their AOL accounts. She wants to make it clear that was a joke. She still uses her AOL account for all her shopping emails which means she is a grown woman telling retail workers her screen name from 1998…outloud…in stores…around…people. Her screen name was derived from a word she made up. Just think about that. She wants to remind AOL and you all that she’s chosen to have enough humiliation to last a lifetime. 

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Tracy Soren is a comedian and writer from Queens, NY. She is 1/2 of soren & jolles with fellow comedian Jessie Jolles. They’ve been called one of NYC's Top 10 Up-And-Coming Comedians, The Next Broad City, and 10 Rising Improv Stars That Deserve Their Own TV Shows. Tracy has been featured on Bravo’s digital series "GuideTo...", hosting for Refinery29's Facebook Live, and the current season of Elite Daily's "Generation whY". UCB trained, she improvises throughout the city with her indie teams Gulf Oil and FIRE FIRE FIRE. Tracy has written for sites like Reductress, Slop Sandwich, and Mashable.

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