I just completed a small contract in which I hired a man from Pakistan via UpWork to do some work on my website.
He was fantastic, and did the initial job, which would have taken me two days and it still would’ve been wrong, in 90 minutes.
I then decided to do some work on a different website, and there were suddenly glitches. I know enough about such things to know the problem was with the webhost, not my freelancer, and we worked through it together. He spent 3 hours on the task (until after 2 am in his time zone) and then refused to bill me for it because we didn’t achieve the objective!
I gave him a substantial bonus when it was all over to thank him for his hard work and the great advice he gave me about the site.
Then he said a couple things which both encouraged me and made me wonder.
He said “It has been a pleasure working with you; you are way different than the clients I have worked with so far.” (By the way, he has a 100% success rate on UpWork for completing jobs satisfactorily, so it’s not like he’s been messing up people’s sites.) He continued, “I feel comfort with clients, rarely… Thank you for being so nice, supportive and polite.”
He’s thanking me for being nice? Supportive of him working on MY site? Thanks for being polite?
I don’t think I treated him in any special way at all. Which makes me wonder how he has been treated by others. And also made me audit my other online interactions with people.
One of the problems with Facebook, blog commenting and even emails and texting, is that we tend to say things to people via those media that we wouldn’t say face to face. I’ve done it myself. But integrity means we are integrated, that we are the same person online as offline.
So let’s maybe start a trend of being nice and supportive and polite online, so that it becomes the norm, and that those who conduct themselves otherwise are the oddballs.
And, if you need any technical work done on a website- SSL, migration, tweaking for speed- I know just the guy!