Effort and Reward; No longer linked

It’s true, they’re not linked – you can bust your ass and put in as much effort as you can, and see no reward and vice versa.  Here’s a quick disclaimer for today’s post;

This post is very much a gripe I’ve been having for a while, and the people it is aimed at fall into two broad categories.  First off the people that don’t put in the effort and still expect the reward, or put another way the people that sail through life without really trying yet still manage to be good at things.  Second, people like me that are fed up of working hard all the time only to turn round and help one of the first category of people.  If you’re new to 3D (or whatever) and your work isn’t that good yet but you’re trying to learn; this isn’t aimed at you.  If you’re constantly learning and growing this post isn’t for you.  If you teach others for a living then this post most definitely isn’t for you as the issues within would drive you insane.  I’m under no illusions here, you’ll probably still read it if your interest is peaked, but you’ve been warned.

What is Effort?

Effort is working to make something/do something/be something.  It’s not easy by it’s nature.  Effort is that thing we’re all told from a young age that if we put in enough of it, we’ll be rewarded.  Money, good things, happiness – it’s all meant to come from effort.

‘Hard work’ means much the same thing; if you work hard you’re meant to be rewarded.  But what does it actually mean to work hard and really put the effort in?

It means heartache, it means pain, it means blood and guts.  It means feeling scared, it means being uncertain, it means being alienated from the people that like to work less hard.  It means being exhausted both mentally and physically every day in some form, or at the least on most days.  It means keeping going even when you want to give up, turn tail and run.  It means hardship.

I’ll say this now, anyone that says otherwise is a liar.  This may be intolerant of me, and if you can refute it after reading the rest of this post please do.  I’ll be happy to debate the matter with you.

What is Reward?

Reward is subjective.  One man’s reward is another man’s curse; how it manifests itself varies from person to person.  We’re taught again from a young age that we want rewarded, that it should be the main goal of our lives; to find what we desire and to work hard enough to get it.  We’re taught, knowingly or not, that so long as we get our reward then the quality of the work we produce doesn’t matter.

People can sail through life and still be rewarded.  We’ve all seen it; people that get up one day, decide they want to be an artist, or a musician, or whatever else, and turn into an overnight success with all the rewards they could ever ask for.  We’ve probably even seen people do this without putting in much or any work at all.

In short ladies and gentlemen our concept of work = reward is bullshit.  Pardon the strong language.

How the System Works

Right now, if you’ll pardon the expression, it’s the dumbest and the prettiest that get the most attention.  In college, or work, or life in general; if you do something stupid you hear about it, if you’re attractive you’re listened to.  I’d even add charisma into that mix.  People that put in the effort are rewarded far later, and in our schools the best and the brightest are left to their own devices while the rest of the class ‘catches up’

We reward people for the wrong reasons.  If you don’t put in the work at school, or don’t understand it, you’re rewarded with more attention, care and time.  If you happen to be a bit of a looker you’re more likely to be listened to than that person over there with the real information.  If you can network and learn to speak eloquently, fluidly, and in a way that engages people; lord help anyone trying to compete with you.  .  Since my beef is with people that don’t try, rather than any particular mental capacity or charisma I’ll be skipping past those other two points for the moment.  That’s an article in and of itself.

Lets recap that a little; Rewards are distributed based on how annoying/stupid we think the person is, how loud their complaints are, and how much attention they demand.  Of that category the people that bother me the most are the ones that whine and complain because they can’t do something, get the attention, have the answer handed to them on a plate, do part of that and then call their work good enough.  They are the people that demand our attention more often than not, and they’re the people that get it.  People that work hard don’t get a look in unless they also speak louder than anyone else in the room or have one of the other aforementioned traits.

How the System Should Work

Call me unrealistic, but is it too much to ask that we realign to support the people that work hard?

Too often these people, me included actually, are taken advantage of by the people that just don’t care enough.  Whether it is in a college class, a forum, a blog or your workplace – people care enough to want the end result, but not enough to put in the work required to get there.  Again, if you’re new to something, just learning the tricks of the trade and you ask for help you’re not going to be shot down; because you’re trying to learn.  However you can’t expect to come to the people that know what they’re doing, that work on getting better, and that (maybe) succeeded and expect to be given all the answers without a price.

Yet that’s exactly what we (or at least I) currently do.  Sure we’ll help the ones that care too, but for whatever reason we help those that don’t equally.  Sometimes even more.  Perhaps it strokes our ego, perhaps people that don’t care make us feel less threatened, or perhaps we’re just too busy trying to be liked to differentiate.  This tendency will be taken and raped for all it’s worth, until we could actually be instrumental in one of those people gaining the credit and reward for our effort.

I’m proposing we work hard, and gain our own reward.  While still spring-boarding the people that will work hard and continue to do so.  People with passion, people with drive, people with a better reason for doing what they do than ‘I need to pass this thing to get my qualification’.

My Plan

It’s up to you whether you follow this, but I’ve had enough of being taken for granted and wasting my time where it benefits no one.  Least of all me.  Call me selfish, but I’d like to start seeing my own rewards for my efforts; to that purpose I’ll be making a few changes.

  1. The people I help will be exclusively those that will use it, and learn from it.  People that settle for ‘good enough’ without a really good reason will be told to shove it.
  2. Unless they genuinely forget, there will be no repeat lessons when I’m asked something directly.
  3. I won’t count sub par work from myself or anyone else as acceptable.
  4. I’ll be more aggressive both on my own behalf, and on the behalf of the people that work for it with looking and asking for rewards.
  5. If anyone tries to blackmail me, or someone else, into helping them when they clearly don’t care enough to put the effort in to learn it themselves will be cut down.


This may seem harsh and out of character, but that’s my current standpoint.  This has been bothering me for a long while, as I mentioned, and enough is enough.  I certainly hope I’ve alienated a few people with this; if I didn’t my audience isn’t big enough and my post didn’t do its job.

It’s time for action people; what bothers you and why do you put up with it?

24 thoughts on “Effort and Reward; No longer linked

  1. Lees Shizzle

    Heather I hope you get the rewards your seeking. I’m not sure what to say next, but I would say I didn’t expect to arrive here to see this. It makes me feel better bout my rants though. lol.
    The other thing that comes from your post is that helping some who don’t care and or treating them equally. That’s what a helping person does. Sure it requires and takes our energy but we know no different that’s who we are. I worked in the helping field as in Social Work for years and sometimes felt like some folks I was trying to help was like talking to a brick wall. It was frustrating and zapped me at times. I sometimes think this is why I am so blunt and honest. Not always appropriate, but I tell it like it is. I just have to remember to not do it when it’s offensive or not based on contructive criticisim and done out of anger. Tough for me to do but not imposible.
    I have to say, I didn’t expect this rant, lol, totally hope you feel better and it’s good to know your human. And when all said and done, your also not alone. Keep on keeping on.
    .-= Lees Shizzle´s last blog ..Always Remember Your Little Sperm won you a Gold Medal =-.

    1. TylinaVespart

      Lol yea, I’m human too. Actually I feel a whole lot better after that, thanks Lee. 🙂

      Didn’t ever expect to rant on here, and I probably won’t again for a while, but it’s nice to know I’ve not scared everyone off!

  2. Sire

    A lot of what you say Heather is true and most of it is propagated by society. In school those who can work on their own are left to their own resources whilst those who seem to need help get the extra attention, even though a lot of the time it’s not wanted.

    In real life I believe that the unions have a lot to answer for as I believe it’s their interference which as caused a fair bit of harm in today’s economy. The slackers get the same treatment as those who do the majority of the work, and if the employer tries to do anything about it they’re all forced to go on strike.

    I believe their is a place for them but I believe that they should be also on the side of the employer when it can be seen that they’re right.

    I do believe that effort does produce reward otherwise I woudn’t be in the situation I’m in today.
    .-= Sire´s last blog ..Where Bloggers Meet, A Forum For Bloggers =-.

    1. TylinaVespart

      I hadn’t even thought about Unions and their role in this; good point! I think in general they probably mean well, but there’s a certain level of protecting the ‘weaker’ (read: less competant) that’s gotten a bit out of hand across the board really.

      If effort didn’t work I’d be advocating sitting back with your feet up, with a little umberella drink. It can work, and you see proof of that everywhere; the problem comes when you work hard and it rewards someone else instead of yourself (as opposed to as well as). That annoys me.

      It’s just a matter of knowing when to say no really, I guess. Thanks for commenting. 🙂

        1. TylinaVespart

          Well so far for me it’s not been disasterous, but there’s been enough to be noticeable. Glad to see your risk paid off though Sire.

          As a question, how long ago did you make the jump?

    1. TylinaVespart

      It was a bit out of character wasn’t it? Sorry that it’s making you uneasy El. 🙂

      Basically I wanted to rally the troops and let them know it was ok to stop being taken for granted. And I wanted to rant, just a little. 😉

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  3. Olusegun

    Brutally harsh but true or Why would a Paris Hilton be so lucky and have it all without doing jack or adding value?

    Anyway, I respect your decisions.

    For me I believe reward is a function of taking the right opportunities that come in the right season with the help of the right people.

    1. TylinaVespart

      I’d forgotten about Paris Hilton… she’s a definite example though. But as I said, my gripe isn’t against people with natural advantages, it’s against people that sit back and do jack all.

      I think you could be right though, do the right things at the right time with the right support and you’re pretty much set.

      Thanks for stopping by Olusegun, your opinion is appreciated, 🙂

  4. Ralph

    Rant all you want but don’t expect people to change. There are all kinds of people out there. Most of them are good people and most of them are sheep. The ones that aren’t sheep are either wolves or sheepdogs and it is hard to tell the difference if you are a sheep. Don’t expect the sheep to appreciate you, understand you or recognize you. You have to get the satisfaction all on your own.

    1. TylinaVespart

      Thanks Ralph, I think I needed the reality check.

      By and large I’m pretty satisfied with what I do, though every now and then I do let situations like this get to me a bit too much. Back to my usual pleasant self again now though 🙂

  5. Eric

    I understand what you mean Heather. Most people just want the reward and don’t want to put in the work. What they don’t realise is that it’s too easy to say, “Hey, can I help you with anything and in return you can do me a favor.”

    Just be nice to someone and offer to help them and then help each other out. We’re not in this world alone unless we make it that way. Lend a hand and do your part for the rewards are by far worth it. They don’t always seem that way just because that’s how life is. But look at results and those will show.

    Good thoughts and words here Heather.
    .-= Eric´s last blog ..Build Your Blog With Fire In Mind =-.

    1. TylinaVespart

      Thanks Eric, yea I think the part I really take umbrage to is people not putting in the work, asking for help, getting the help, then doing nothing in return and taking it no further. Some people will get ahead that way though I’m going to assume that someday they come crashing down…

      Either way I’ll keep on helping people, just going to be a little more selective. You’re right though, it is easy to ask for help in return.

  6. Kira

    On the contrary – your ‘rant’ didn’t scare me off, but rather attracted me to read further on this, my first time to your site! Tons of great nuggets in what you wrote, comments included. Without knowing you at all, you did appear to be on a bit of a ‘rampage’, but your insights into current mainstream shallow/hollow American culture were so apt! In the words of another, ‘keep on keepin on’ (I write this with a bit of uneasiness, as I don’t really what turns your crank since I haven’t read anything else by you other than this entry, but if it is anywhere close to representative of where you come from, ‘Keep on keepin on!’

    1. TylinaVespart

      Welcome Kira 🙂 As you’ll see by the rest of the site I’m usually a lot less rampage-prone. All have our days though!

      In terms of belief it’s relatively close to what I think normally though (slightly less level-headed), hope you find something interesting in the rest of the site. Thanks for stopping by and commenting, nice to mee you!

  7. Dave Doolin

    I’m with you. Here’s what I do…

    I charge for stuff.

    Sure, read the blog posts for free (for now), but I don’t give away anything I take more time to produce. I just don’t. And I won’t.

    This will very, very clearly draw a razor sharp line between my customers… and those more interested in telling me I’m doing it wrong… when they have no intention to purchase, and wouldn’t use it if it was free in any case.
    .-= Dave Doolin´s last blog ..Maintain Draft Queue with Practical WordPress Tips 1 – 12 =-.

    1. TylinaVespart

      Seems like a good way to seperate them out Dave, will have to try that. Have plans to launch ebooks starting from next month anyway so I can incorporate it in there.

      Thanks for the support 🙂

  8. Justin Matthews

    Sometimes all you need to do is have a good rant and get it all out. This was a much different post than I was expecting as well! Good job! We will have to get you on a guest rant over at the coots…You could be the first female Cantankerous Old Coot….
    Anyway, I really like Dave’s advice up there, Give some for free but if it takes more time, charge for it. You have a unique niche in 3d art, you could charge for courses, consulting, logos…Many different things.
    Keep working hard and you will succeed. Stick to your guns and you will succeed. Don’t let anyone tell you different than what you feel is right.
    .-= Justin Matthews´s last blog ..Taking advantage of loopholes, a post to piss you off. =-.

    1. TylinaVespart

      Thanks Justin, good to see you!

      Do I quality to be a coot though? (19, maybe a little on the young side) May have to wait a few years 😉 Would be fun though, some really great rants over there.

      Anyway that’s one of the things I like about this niche; there’s so much you can create and most of it’s a lot of fun to make. Comes a time when you have to start charging though, I completely agree. Thanks for the encouragment!
      .-= TylinaVespart´s last blog ..What’s wrong with being who you are? =-.


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