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One of my clients sent me an email early this morning thanking me for the most recent job I did for him.

That started my day off great.

He’s one of my oldest clients and last week he asked me if I could do a rush job on a podcast he would get to me on Sunday. At about five in the afternoon he started to IM me telling me that he had uploaded the first components.The show would be more complicated than usual and he wouldn’t have all of the pieces ready until eight my time.

Fine. I got to work on the things he sent me as he sent them to me. It was ten before he got me the last piece. He signed off of IM and told me to call him if I needed him. I turned the show around pretty quickly for him and uploaded it within hours.

This morning I woke up to a pair of emails from him thanking me for my work and showing his appreciation for how the show ended up.

Most often that’s all I need.

I left the last “job” that I had because I didn’t feel respect or appreciation from the guys I worked for. It wasn’t money. It wasn’t the work I got to do — that continued to be mostly interesting. I just got the feeling that I was no longer viewed as an individual they valued and more as a commodity performing a task that could be performed by another warm body.

There’s nothing in my contracts with any of my clients that specifies respect or appreciation, but relationships where we each respect and appreciate each other work so much better than when one or both of use don’t.