Notes from Jeff York

Small business marketing thoughts from a marketing small business owner

Integrity, karma, and business

with 2 comments

According to Wikipedia, integrity is “the basing of one’s actions on an internally consistent framework of principles.”  In the world of freelance media, we often find ourselves in vulnerable positions.  Sometimes we are asked to submit creative work on spec.  Sometimes we work to develop new business with the understanding that commissions would be paid.  I have been in this situation several times recently with entirely different outcomes.

If your business model involves the generation of creative materials or concepts, a substantial amount of your success relies on other people operating with integrity.  You provided logo proofs for approval without full payment, for example.  They, in turn, choose which sample to run with and you executed it, providing the client with full vector, breakouts, etc of their new logo.  They could easily have taken your proof and gone elsewhere with it for execution.  Maybe they have a niece that’s going to art school or a neighbor that knows Photoshop.  But if they operated with integrity, then they knew they entered into an implied agreement with you and you will do the work.  If they don’t like your work, then they return the proofs and seek help elsewhere.

I have been on the wrong end of this scenerio several times.  Creative work has substantial value.  So does operating with integrity.  Your reputation is everything in the small world of creative developers.  Your brand is built on the way you’ve conducted business.  There is no better advertising than word of mouth.  Those mouths can just as easily destroy businesses as it can build them.

Have you been in a situation where someone has operated in a less than honest fashion?  Have you been in a situation where your creative was regarded without value?  What did you do to rectify the situation?  What can be done to protect your greatest product, your creative, in the future?

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Written by Jeff York

March 21, 2008 at 11:26 pm

2 Responses

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  1. […] Notes from Buzzworthy Media added an interesting post on Integrity, karma, and businessHere’s a small excerpt […]

  2. […] comes from your actions and interactions. Leadership comes from within and is projected outward. Leadership is the ideal building block from which to build management […]


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