Maggie Rants [and Raves]

It's Not That Easy

by Maggie Franklin | August 3, 2009

Right now, things around my appointment book are a little slow. I think I've discussed that the back-to-school season leaves me alone at my table every year, with time to contemplate the meaning of life and the sound of one hand clapping. This year I have decided to use my spare time to put 3-D "nail" art on anything that doesn't run away.


I also spend some of my spare time whining and moaning about being poor and why it is that I never have money and time at the same time.


Invariably, someone will make some flippant comment that if I want more money, I should work more.


DUH, ya think?


Someone will offer that perhaps I should start working in the mornings. Or on Wednesdays. Or on Saturdays.


Well, here's the problem with this thinking. Just because I am at work doesn't mean I will be working. Sure, I could go in at 7 a.m. every day. And I could sit at my station and put more 3-D flowers on more things while I wait for my first client to come in at 11 a.m. I already work till 9 or 10 p.m. most evenings in order to accommodate my clients' work schedules. I think 12-hour days are long enough to warrant a little respect for my work ethic.


Yeah, I could work that extra day. I could come in on Wednesdays. But real life does require some balance and I do have a significant other waiting for me at home who already doesn't get to spend as much time with me as he'd like. If I start coming home at 10 p.m. on Wednesdays too, I might find my stuff on the lawn when I get here.


Not to mention, what will actually happen if I start working five days a week is that some of my regular clients who come to see me on their lunch hours or take some comp time to come in during the afternoon now will want those newly open after-5 p.m. spots. Which means that I won't be opening up space for new clients; instead my existing schedule would just rearrange itself. Which means, in essence, I would take a pay cut. Because instead of seeing 30 clients a week over 40 hours, I'd be seeing 30 clients a week over 52 hours.


It's called math — and it isn't as hard to do as many people want to believe.


The problem isn't having enough TIME to accommodate the clients, it's that I don't have enough CLIENTS to fill up all the time that I've allotted for them. Adding more time to my schedule is not only not the answer, it doesn't even make sense. It's not like I keep turning down people who want to come in on Wednesdays, or Saturdays, or at 6 a.m. Nope. Somehow I manage to find a time for everyone who calls. I just need more people to call.


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