Stupid contractors – 7 reasons they are idiots.
This was sent to us in response to our article on Ten Reasons Why Clients Are Complete Idiots.
Reply by an Agent
Contractors can be complete idiots too, you know. Here, in my experience, are seven ways in which they normally show themselves up.
1. Stupid Contractors can’t find their own contracts
The only reason that agencies exist is because contractors, who like to think of themselves as small businesses and not temporary employees, have no sales or marketing skills at all and make no attempt to get them.
I haven’t heard of too many successful firms who have no marketing or sales expertise.
2. Cold calling upsets Contractors
Any decent agent knows that you have to make dozens, perhaps hundreds of calls just to get one good lead. You can take a lot of abuse in the process, e.g. “where did you get my contact details from?”
Contractors, the poor dears, will give it three or four phone calls before they give up in shame or embarrassment.
If the first call results in a “where did you get our contact details from” response, then they’ll just give up right away. Are they really proper businessmen? The only ones who normally are able to get contracts by themselves are ones who get their wives to call for them.
3. Contractors can’t negotiate
Even when contractors go direct, they generally don’t get a good deal. They usually get just a bit more than what the other contractors get. They always imagine that they will get their normal rate plus the 20% or so that the agency gets.
This is complete baloney. Most don’t even get 10% more and it is more likely to be about 5% more. It is agencies who have bid up the market in the past.
Negotiating with contractors is like taking candy off kids, as most agents will tell you. We all have our little stories.
Stupid contractors don’t have the skills to bid up the market and they would get a lot less if agencies did not exist. The cut that agencies take is very well earned indeed. Contractors should be very grateful to them.
4. Contractors are ungrateful
One of the stupidest things about them is that they can’t wait to slag their agent and their agency of to all and sundry, including the client. What does this gain them? All it means is that the client might stop taking people from that agency, and that could include them at their next renewal.
5. Contractors think of themselves as temporary employees
Contractors don’t take it on board that they have customers or clients. They have this attitude that they earn their money and then leave at the end of the day. This is not conducive to having a successful small business, or indeed a big one.
6. Contractors have no customer orientation.
Most businesses, whether small or large, expend a good part of their energy, and some of their cash, in keeping their customers sweet, i.e. in giving them a good image of their supplying company.
This may involve taking the client out to lunch or for a beer at lunchtime or in the evening every so often. This is completely lost on our ‘small businessmen’.
7. Stupid Contractors can’t take opportunities
Contractors are in a perfect position to be able to see opportunities to get more business from their clients. They know when new projects are starting, they know when new work is coming up, they even know when the company is looking for extra skilled people.
Do they do anything about this?
Stupid Contractors just sit and watch while everyone else gets the cream, whether it be agencies, software houses or consultancies, without ever a peep from them.
If these are real small businessmen then I’m a monkey’s uncle. It’s just as well that they have agencies around to look for jobs for them because they would never find any opportunities themselves.