This blog is about Graphic Design, Vector Art, and Cartoon Illustration

July 24, 2018

How to find work, and get paid money for it

I've often talked to people who are looking for a job. Like so many things in life, a job is something that many people do without really understanding what it's all about. It's about work in exchange for money. I'll see if I can explain.

There's no lack of work out there, and there never has been. Stuff needs to be done every day. Our ancestors had to go to the river to fetch water. They had to collect wood for the fire. The list goes on and on, and I'm sure that you can add more. And as social animals, and a cooperative society, we divided up this work.

Not everyone can go fetch water. And not everyone can have babies. That is, people have special skills and talents. And together, this forms a society. And the things that people need, from water to music, are created by the people who have the ability to do these things, and by the other people's willingness to trade something for those things. You can think of it as barter, which predates money. And all money is is a receipt that can be easily exchanged, which represents that some work has been done.

So there's no lack of work out there. There's plenty of things that need to be done! The trick, as you've probably guessed, is to do something that's useful enough to other people that they will pay for it. If no one chooses to pay for it, the work you do is called "volunteering", which is all well and good except that at some point you will probably have a need for something that you yourself can't create, such as food.

If you've stayed with me this far, I'm impressed. So let's take a look at your first job. And I don't mean the first job you had after college, I mean the first time that you got money in exchange for work. It might have been mowing the lawn for a neighbor. For me, it was delivering newspapers. My parents didn't pay me to do chores around the house, or do an "allowance" so if I wanted money, I had to go find work, which I did. Of course my parents paid for my food, and all expenses, so the money that I made I got to keep, or spend on luxuries, like toys. I had a nice collection of toy cars!

After high school graduation, you have two choices - either make do with the skills you have (youth, strength, etc.) or see if you can improve your value to others by developing more skills. I studied graphic design, and with those new skills I found a lot of work. At first it was just freelancing, but eventually it became full-time jobs for me. And then after many years of doing graphic design, I taught it. At that point my skills were very high, and I got paid more money to teach than I would have made staying at the same level, doing design.

So there you go. If you understand what work is, you'll see it everywhere. Of course, most people will want you to do it for free, or at least they'll ask. When you find someone who will pay you, enter into negotiations, shake hands, and get to work. It really is just that simple.

I hope this helps. Good luck to you in your search for work!

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