Re: [Czechlist] Crisis and work
- What about US tycoons? Aren't they in trouble too?
My biggest crisis influence is a US based worldwide tech company, which hired me via Czecho and Poland to proof their subcontracted agencies' work, only that while I'm working directly with Czechs I'm supposed to be paid by Americans, Belgians, Italians, French and whoever else the original file came from....I don't normally do proofs, so I gave them quite a decent price, because the stuff is fairly complicated, and boy was I right - they tell me my rate is the highest (probably a lie), but they (being Danish, Italian and Polish) can't appreciate the "quality" I'm against - a Polish agency called Argos obviously subcontracted to the cheapest freelancers available, which leaves me to sift through thousands of words of current confused with voltage, "compact, power-dense design" translated as "kompaktni provedeni s velkou hustotou" etc., etc. every sentence is verbatim in English word order with (not very brightly selected) Czech equivalents made in Millenium.. almost looks like a machine translation.
Plus they "forgot" to pay me for almost a year's worth of work, which is alternatively blamed on SAP, the US, the Crisis and whatever... I tend to think of these jobs as an extra thing on the side to get the foreign currency account supplied for whimsical eBay purchases, foreign expenditures and the like, but when it gets over a certain amount and it's needed elsewhere, it stops being unimportant..
The reason I asked the question, however, was that I sensed a similar attitude from a few Czech-based (subsidiaries of foreign mothers) clients, some of them making ridiculous excuses not to pay invoices all of a sudden (SAP, I'm only allowed to authorise under CZK 2500 invoices, they are approved, but they must go to Bratislava and then back before being paid etc..), others talking about uncertain future and the rest of it..
What really gets me is when a client who owes close to hundred k's (CZK) for more than three months sends an urgent job, a letter from their global CEO warning about clients who may not be abble to pay in time and what to do about them (refuse supplies unless upfront payment is procurred etc... ) to be translated within an hour and then continues to owe what they owe and keeps making stupid excuses (odeslo to vcera [a week later they explain that it "odeslo" for approval to somewhere the other end of the world])... it would be funny if it wasn't combined with other clients paying late and making similar excuses and me getting behind on invoices and bills...
What about Czech-based clients? Anyone noticing any trends?
----- Original Message -----
From: James Kirchner
Sent: Thursday, November 06, 2008 1:07 PM
Subject: [Czechlist] Crisis and work
Well, Matej, I have actually been affected by "the crisis". This week
I was notified that a project that had been providing me significant
income daily is being put on hold for the foreseeable future. I was
indirectly employed by some Russian oligarch, and all those guys have
gotten hammered lately and are having a lot of trouble with cash flow.
So I suppose a lot of people have been hit.
In this case, however, the oligarch's people have paid for everything
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