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Tips on creating a great website plan
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Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Website Planning - advice on getting website help

"A Medieval Home Companion: Housekeeping in the Fourteenth Century."
Translated and edited by Tania Bayard.

The book was written in the year 1393 as advice to a young bride about household help.
It is also sound advice for getting website help.

" ... when you have to deal with these people .... always bargain with them before they start the work, so there won't be any argument afterward. What usually happens, though, is that they don't want to bargain but are ready to forge ahead with the job without coming to an agreement. They say so sweetly: "Sir, it is nothing, it is not necessary; you will pay me well, and I will be satisfied with whatever you decide." ... when the job is done they will say: "Sir, there was more work than I thought. There was this and that to do, and a lot of running around." And they will not agree to the payment and will shout ugly and mean words. Therefore, tell Master .. not to put them to work, or let anyone else put them to work, without bargaining first."

"Because of this, it is better to dicker with them evenly and plainly beforehand to avoid any dispute."

"I earnestly beg you, if the work or the business requires it, have inquiries made about how those you want to employ conduct and have conducted themselves toward others. Also, have nothing to do with people who talk back or are arrogant, haughty, mocking, or insolent no matter what benefit or advantage you see in them or how good a bargain they would make with you. Send them away from you and your work graciously and calmly. For if they begin, you will not escape without slander or strife."

"Because of this, have your people hire ... helpers who are peaceful and good natured, and pay them more ..."

Have inquiries made about how those you want to employ conduct and have conducted themselves toward others. Also, have nothing to do with people who talk back or are arrogant, haughty, mocking or insolent -- no matter what benefit or advantage you see in them or how good a bargain they would make with you. Send them away from you and your work graciously and calmly. For if they begin you will not escape without slander or strife. Because of this, have . . . helpers who are peaceful and good natured, and pay them more."

"I advise that you always remember to tell your people that they must have peaceful folk work for them, and always bargain ahead of time, and do the accounts and pay often, without allowing long credit to build up either by tally or on paper. Although tally or account books are better than always relying on memory, for the creditors always imagine more and the debtors less, and from this are born disputes, grudges, and foul reproaches. Have your good creditors paid willingly and often what they are owed, and be kind to them so they don't change toward you, for it is not always possible to get truly peaceable people again."

"Be aware that of those ... who are out of work, there are many who come forward, present themselves, and urgently seek masters and mistresses. Don't take any of these without first knowing where they lived before. Send some of your own people there to ask about their character - whether they talk or drink too much, how long they were there, what work they did and know how to do, whether they have lodgings or acquaintances in the town, what country and people they come from, how long they were there, and why they left. Through their past work you will find out what confidence or trust you may have in their future work."


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