Niggle - What falls within the remit of your contract as a Graphic Designer?


Jri

Member
This is just a quick one, but it might resonate with one or two people on here:

My boss has diverted my attention away from my usual work to one of their personal projects (they dabble in another non-related business and want some documents editing/rudimentary photoshopping).

I'm still doing it within paid work hours, and it's not so much work that it'd be disrupting/affecting my usual routine jobs but it technically isn't on my contract to do work that isn't related to the company I work for.

I am employed here as a graphic designer and am happy to work on whatever projects (hey, they're paying me after all!), but I don't want that definition to become blurred into being my boss' personal designer. As soon as I was asked to do it, I felt a pang of uneasiness that I never get (even with clients of our company can be really awkward)

Has/does anyone else encounter(ed) this? Am I being to fussy about it?
 

Jri

Member
No, if I felt it was illegal - I would have flat refused (to which, he would have no response). I'm a stickler for that sort of thing. The photoshopping was just a crappy old lo-res version of his company logo, the strapline of which had to be updated.

I think the issue is that my job currently sees me digress away from graphic design more than I'd like to already.

I'm in the process of building my portfolio to help me move on, but nonetheless, I just feel like I'm being dragged away from graphic design a bit at a time. I think the uneasiness came from my boss' sense of entitlement to put me onto whatever project he wants (he pays me to be a graphic designer for a specific company) regardless of it's relevance to my role.

I can't word it in a way that doesn't make me sound like I'm trying to worm out of doing my job, but there's something about it that's bugging me.
 

Levi

Moderator
Staff member
Answer really depends on the following question...
Is the boss you mention the owner of the company you work for or is he employed by the owner like you are.

If it's the former it's probably a grey area in terms of something you should be doing. Now if it's the latter he's likely breaking his own contract in getting you to do it too.
 

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
Is the company you work for in the design business such as an agency or a studio or are you the in-house Designer at a company?
 

Jri

Member
I'm an in-houser at an otherwise non design related company (I got into it to get my foot in the design door as my area is a bit design-studio-scarce and have gotten trapped in a rut, the time has come to leave and go work in an actual dedicated design agency with frosted glass, space hoppers and bean bag chairs).

Answer really depends on the following question...
Is the boss you mention the owner of the company you work for or is he employed by the owner like you are.
The answer to this is also a grey area, but the bottom line is that he's not breaching the wishes of anyone higher up as he gets free reign (hint: nepotism).

Really appreciate everyone's advice. Thumbs up emoticon.
 

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
I feel your pain Jri. :(

Last place I was at was the same.
That wasn't a design company and I was the in-house Designer.
One of the Directors used to think I was his personal design bitch and just had me doing stuff for him on a whim.

He was a real dick (he was actually called Richard as well) ;)
He was the kind to have you jumping through hoops.
"Change this, change that, make it blue, change it back again".
It was exhausting to say the least.

I found out that he'd been blown out by several design companies for being a nightmare client before I came along.

(W@nker emoticon)

Only thing to do is move on and it sounds like it's time for you.

I ended up telling him to stick his job.
Just another of my burning bridges. ;)
 

Jri

Member
Nothing wrong with burning a bridge if it leads to a dump. Did you go straight to freelancing?
 

scotty

Moderator
Staff member
Nothing wrong with burning a bridge if it leads to a dump. Did you go straight to freelancing?
Well said Jri! :D

I did but I'd never really left it.
I was doing both at the time as I had to take the job on to allow my wife to return to education.
I didn't want to do it, I didn't like the Director even in the interview and it paid peanuts.

The crunch came when my car broke and I couldn't get to work as I live rural outside another town with no public transport.

The Director accused me of lying about it and demanded I return to work the next morning for a disciplinary even though I offered to work from home and make up the time on top once I'd fixed the car.

It all got very ugly.

Luckily my wife has passed her course that week and got a job shortly after.

We were broke at the time but it was the best thing to do as I've found that things never improve when you feel like the about a job.
 
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