A Nigerian Journalist identified as Tijani Oluwamayowa recently shared a story on his social media pages on how he short-changed himself by doing a job worth fifty million Naira (N50M) for just a hundred thousand Naira (N100k).
Mayowa revealed that he got the job offer from a ‘big brother’ who paid him to write articles for him, but he later realised he was not duly paid by his ‘big brother’ when a bigger offer came.
Read the full story as shared by Mayowa below:
“Straight out of school, I had a technocrat “big brother” who paid me to write stuff for him. He gave me his talking points and I fleshed them out. He delivered them as speeches. He paid me N25,000 for 800 words. Then this happened.
Before I continue, I’d like to say two things clearly: 1. This is not to denigrate “big brother”. I still think it was my fault, not his. Besides, he taught me a lot. 2. This story is purely to share a few money lessons I’ve learnt.
Back to it: So, he paid me N25k for 800 words. It was cool cash, considering how much I earned at the time. Sometimes, he’d give me one article/speech per month. Some other months, he’d give me as much as four per month.
On this fateful day, he called me and gave me a brief, I said “ok, sir. It should be ready by tomorrow afternoon”. This was because it was a topic I was passionate about. He said no, I’d like to see you, let’s discuss it.
It was strange, but I met up with him and he explained what he wanted in detail. I told him about my position on the topic. He said he agrees with me, but he would like me to write about another position.
I told him that he would look stupid anywhere he delivered such a speech. He said he knows, but that was what he wanted to do. I advised him against it, but he insisted.
He was and is not in government, but if I’d ever work with someone in government, I’d love that I can be candid with the person. Not just “yes, sirs”.
He asked how much I want to be paid. In my mind, I was like “but we have a fixed price”. But since he was asking, I didn’t want to lose the opportunity to get more. I said, “as my elder brother, I trust you won’t cheat me… just tell me how much you want to pay”.
He laughed and said N100,000. I was super excited - I wanted to jump - but I played it cool. I said “ok, so when do you need it”. He said by midnight. I was like oh, wow. Before I left, he said he’d give me extra if I did it well.
I sent the job hours later. But he asked me to do some graphics based on data I quoted in the report. I told him I don’t do graphics. [Mistake: Whatever you don’t do, find someone to do it. Let people within your circle always eat from your work whenever the opportunity appears]
He insisted he wanted graphics, I said I’d get someone and have to pay him separately. The guy I hired said he’d take N21k. I told him I’d pay him 15k. He agreed, and I paid him N15k. We did the job. Transformed my article to an A4 page of fine words and graphics.
The man loved it and paid me N25k more. Total N125K. Out of the goodness of my heart, I paid the graphics guy an extra N10k. He was surprised and blessed my soul. For clarity, I got N100,000, graphics guy got N25,000.
I went to bed N100k richer. But when I woke up the next morning; my work was in EVERY MAJOR NEWSPAPER in this country. I saw it on a billboard on my way to work. I had just worked for THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.“
What Would You Do If You Were In His Shoes?
Drop Your Comments Below.