the salary thang… don’t sweat it

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    • #43127
      AvatarGrinner Hester

      Ive seen many posts asking about salaries. First, I have to say if youre in this for the money, youre in the wrong biz. There are many jobs in which you can throw on a tie and make an easy six figures. Do that and save room for those who are so passionate about this that the thought of doing anything else has never enter their heads.

      Now, because that passion is not that rare, rest assured there is a big stack of resumes on the desk of every production manager in the world sent by people who are very ready, willing and able that will go to work for free in order to get a chance to show somebody what they can do. Some hate the thought of working for free or minimum wage. I thought it was grand to get paid to learn more than what I paid a college to learn.

      Lets say you start at 5 bucks an hour. Sweet. Your foot is in the door and youre on your way. In most industries, holding a job at one place for a really long time looks fantastic. Im not gonna say it doesnt in this industry but the best way to get a significant raise is to leave and get another job. Cost of living raises are not raises at all. I see them as insults and an invitation to move on. Now, as a receiver of resumes, I like to see a variety of places worked at. It shows a variety in softwares, hardwares, duties and personality combos. It also shows me they are not willing to settle for good enough and I like that.

      This industry is a revolving door of talent and ideas so new blood is simply required. The more people move around, the more people can be moved around.
      Okay, youve done your two years at 5 bucks an hour and have moved up 3 positions. Demand 8 bucks or split. If ya get it, stay and keep climbing. If not, just move on. Youll get a job more in tune with what you need and want to do then.

      Needs vary. With a rapidly-growing family I had to push hard every two years or so. I went from 3 bucks an hour to a salary less than that to 8 bucks an hour to 24k per year to 35k per year to 45k per year to 60k per year to 80k per year to six figures a year in a 13 year window. I moved my family to five states in as many years at one point. I worked 3 jobs at a time to get by when I needed to and I hate to say I neglected my family at times.

      The closest I have ever come to making what Im worth is today as a self-employed editor with my own gear. Only because I am weathered by the ways of the industry do I wonder if the hourly rate I now charge is worth the time away from my family. Nothing ever is ya know. Not he 3 bucks an hour your first employer insulted you with, not the raise you just received for a job well done an not the way-too-high rate you pull out of the air because you really dont wanna mess with something. Were not talking about that though. Were talking about the required hours away from that wonderfulness that puts the food on the table. Man, Ive put the food on the table some pretty bogus ways. We all know where to find high-paying jobs with security. We just know life is too short for that.

      So, the salary thang. Don’t sweat it. Take what’s offered and grin doin’ it. If the pay is low, the pay is temporary. You’re makin’ movies though. It’s all good.

    • #180734

      Thanks for this. Any day I can wake up and get paid to shoot video is a good day.

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