August is the nerviest month. Granted, it’s nice to be lazy and go on holiday, but doing no work for clients, having meetings cancelled and receiving out-of-office replies to emails does not bode well when you’re sending your monthly retainer invoices to them during a downturn.
Soph and I dread the meeting in September when the client will say: “So, remind me what you’ve been doing over the past three months.” And we’ll nervously reply: “Well, in June, we issued a press release, in July we updated our list of things in the pipeline and in August we did sod all.”
We loved a recent FT column that worked out what some essential items would now cost if they had risen in line with gas prices: £33 for a pint of beer, £28 for a coffee, £102 for a packet of fags. “Imagine if we could put up our fees like that,” says Soph. “We’d be charging £12,000 to £18,000 a month.”
But no, we shall continue to pray each month that clients pay our paltry fees as prices for everything else soar.
No doubt when we get back to drafting press releases for our clients again in September, the words ‘secure’ and ‘resilient’ will be much in evidence to reassure the market. Just a shame that the two people typing those words won’t feel either.