No one wants to chase overdue payments. If you’re not careful, it can make you feel like the tax collector in Disney’s Robin Hood, stealing the last coin from an adorable little church mouse. But when you’ve done 38 hours of work for a client who’s suddenly MIA, you’re forced to turn rogue and unleash your inner bounty hunter. Here are some unusual personalities that might take over while you’re tracking down those paychecks! Which one are you?
Polite with a capital P
It’s really hard to switch from being an amicable freelancer to a stern cash collector, especially if you’re a freelancer who signs their emails with ‘Best wishes’. In an attempt to not burden the client, the ‘polite’ freelancer will allow late payments to become VERY late payments! They’ll even start apologizing to the client for sending them an invoice in the first place! To all of you polite freelancers out there, be careful, if you wait too long it’ll be the new tax year by the time you see that dough!
We all panic sometimes, but it’s important to keep a level head when dealing with money. The Panicker will send frantic emails at 2am, riddled with spelling errors and long-winded sentences about not being able to pay their pet insurance on time. They’ve also been known to pace wildly around their home office, leaving numerous voicemails on a client’s answering machine and screaming ‘invoice’ every 3 words.
This is never a good look or a healthy one. Calm down and have a cupcake. You deserve it.
If a client ignores the first invoice you send them, it only seems fair to send a Paypal request as a gentle reminder. But for The Enforcer, it doesn’t stop at Paypal. A quick Venmo request is sent swiftly after the Paypal one, followed by a Bank of America transfer request. Your client can’t possibly ignore your cries after 12 separate requests are sent from 6 different financial institutions, right? Or could they?
When a payment is late the only reasonable thing to do is break out a highlighter and send over your contract stating when and how you need to be paid. You might even Google a few employee rights from the Department of Labor and copy/paste them into the email as well. Who knows, if the client still doesn’t pay up, you have a community of freelance lawyers you can call on, and you can break out your best Erin Brockovich impersonation! Score!
Enjoying your weekend? Of course you are. You’re not worrying about chasing money because your personal Chief Operator at AND CO has your back. You’ve done all the hard work so far, so let someone else do the bounty hunting! Simple.