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Now Hiring: Artists and Intellectuals

This is the job opportunity you’ve been waiting for. Now, before you send your hopes off in the wrong direction, let me be clear: I am personally not hiring anybody. However, I think it’s a common issue that many people who are motivated in creative and intellectual interests do not pursue those goals because they are waiting for someone to offer them a job doing that thing.

Does that sound familiar? When you want to change your work, is the first thing that that crosses your mind to scour companies’ websites looking for someone to hire you to do the thing that you want? Why? Why do you look for someone else to solve the problems that you find pressing?

Let’s change things around. You can do the things you want — in fact, the world is craving for you to do exactly that — so, rather than looking for someone else to employ you for that purpose, you are hereby informed of your own authority to hire yourself. Here’s the job description.

Function Description

Independent artist/intellectual wanted for actualizing creative new products and services. You will be responsible for conceiving ideas and taking them through to production or execution. You will be empowered to hire specialists or contractors for any tasks which are beyond your expertise, and you can arrange a personalized training program for any skills which you’d like to improve upon.

Your working hours are flexible, though likely you will be asked to work overtime, so a 9-to-5 mentality is not suitable. It’s possible that hours will be erratic, and you’ll be called upon for unexpected tasks or problem-solving.


  • Idea generation for new products, projects and services
  • Elaborating concepts into concrete deliverables
  • Project planning; Defining the steps to achieve a project, together with timelines, budgets, actions and risks and how  to define ‘success’
  • Collaborating with other professionals to achieve results
  • Managing the successful execution of projects, typically multiple concurrently
  • Managing your time and budget
  • Constant alignment between project’s progress and the business plan, and adjusting accordingly
  • Communication with customers, colleagues and stakeholders
  • Evangelizing your projects
  • Generating customers or sales channels for your products and services


  • Craftsman/woman; You have a specialty in one or more fields that you have honed over the years and feel confident to use those skills.
  • A determined researcher; You will pro-actively investigate any unknown tasks or variables in your work.
  • Self-motivated; You’re independent enough to know what you want to do and why you’re doing it.
  • Self-initiated; You can be your own activity planner, you don’t need someone else to tell you what to do.
  • Collaborative; You have the ability and willingness to work with others.
  • Grit; You have the determination to complete projects on time and under budget.
  • Good natured; You can recover from set-backs and get back to business
  • Tolerance for uncertainty; You can handle (or even thrive in) uncertain work conditions or with uncertain work outcomes.
  • Adaptable; You enjoy doing different kinds of work on different days and don’t mind wearing different hats.


This role has no base salary but is paid on commission. Your role will be paid according to the work that you bring in. Please note: you will also be held financially accountable for poor work; if clients are not satisfied, you may occasionally need to reconcile with them out of your paycheck.

Does this sound like the job for you? If so, write up your business plan, conduct an interview to determine your readiness for the job, and then start immediately. And, of course, if you need help with any of this, just get in touch.

Katherine Oktober Matthews ( is an artist and analyst based in The Netherlands. She writes and edits extensively in the field of art, is the author of Unique: Making Photographs in the Age of Ubiquity, and founder of Riding the Dragon.

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