The 10 To-Dos When You Get THE CALL

Once in a while, fate throws you a monkey wrench that will completely rock and near capsize your game. I get that once or twice a year. I call it… the lure of the full time job.
It has good timing, too. Just when you're neck deep in freelancing shit (read: lots of work, delayed checks).  Just when you're right at the cusp of questioning the validity of your chosen field. Do I really want this kind of instability? Do I really crave for this kind of excitement? Is stress and panic really my fuck buddies?
In the middle of this existential self-berating, the phone rings --flashing an unfamiliar number. And there it is. A call from your past. A huge agency is asking you to come back to the fold. So...

1. Be open-minded
Hear the agency out. If there's one distinct trait a freelancer has, it's the ability to be open to every opportunity. And that's what this is --an opportunity. So just this once, shut your eyes, bite that lip, take a deep breath, and shed that I'm My Own Boss shtick.

2. Go to the Interview
This is a way for you to see how the industry sees you after so long. This is a way to re-evaluate your performance. This also lets you know your market value. Go to the interview armed with curiosity. You're not a cat. This won't kill you.

3. Seriously Weight Things Option 1
In the middle of your chat, look deep down. Do you have residual hangups about agency life? Have you developed a deep loathing for authority and time sheets? That's what you have to think about before you dive right back in. If you feel nauseous just thinking about this… end this chat now!

4. Seriously Weigh Things Option 2
Ooohkaay… this looks like a good deal. Let's go with it!
But, say, you already have a steady stable of clients and regular work coming from production houses and a consultancy gig with another agency… is taking on a full time job going to kill you? If so...

5. Call for a Compromise
If you can't sacrifice a morsel of your existing solo enterprise, then why not go for a compromise?
Ugh… the rhyming. I just had to. 
Who knows --maybe the agency is actually fine with you onboard part time? As a consultant? As a full time offsite employee? As an on-call semi-regular personnel? So many possibilities.

6. Name your Moolah
Never sell yourself short. Never go through that nasty 'I'm just a freelancer' kinda thing. This is back to big business! If you've been out of the industry loop for too long, don't just send your compensation sheet blind. Research. Ask old friends how much is the position you're being called for rating nowadays. Check websites for rates, too.

7. Black and White it
I cannot stress this enough. Whatever it is you agree on, document it and have it signed. An agency should draft their own contract but I've had experiences wherein I had to do the paperwork. Either way, make sure, the paper exists.


9. Attitude Check
Woohoo! First day! Keep in mind that you've just checked into the big house. Come on time. Come dressed in proper office attire (No jammies for you! Wahaha!). Come prepared to brainstorm. Come ready to fill those hours. Oh, you know the drill.

10. Easy way out
This should probably come in before number 7, but when penning your contract, it's best to agree on some kind of test run period or a not-entirely-binding arrangement. Just so when the freedom bug bites you again, you can easily bail out.

Bottomline: If you're not as jaded as number 3, then keep your doors and windows open. Hey, you might just like coming back, right? You can't knock it until you've re-tried it.
Lure. Bite. Reel 'em in. (That works both ways, by the way.)


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