At what point should I ask for some pay?

I’m still an unpaid intern, but I’ve been getting a lot of growth – both new users and contacts – for the startup app I work for, and it would be nice to get some gas money. My founder lives in NYC and lives quite well judging off the Snaps he posts … so I don’t know.

  • I get trying to get your foot in the door as a young adult, but anything more than a 1 month seems like someone is just taking advantage of you. If you have quantifiable metrics, just put those on your resume and start looking. Obviously have a discussion with the founder, but to them you are free labor at this point.

    Bottom line, stand up for yourself. People will take advantage of you as much as possible, even being nice and cool about it.

  • Unpaid internships are only permissible when you are learning and getting mentored on the job. A real internship has to prioritize your education. If you’re doing regular work that would otherwise be done by a paid employee then you’re not really an intern, you’re just an unpaid employee. You should look up the laws regarding unpaid internships in your jurisdiction. It’s important to know what your rights are, even if the startup you work for will never respect your rights.

    I don’t agree with the previous poster that standing up for yourself is necessarily the right thing to do. As an unpaid intern you need to approach this delicately. Even if you’re in the moral right you don’t want to derail your career before it has even begun.

    If you ask for a salary you have to approach it like you approach any asymmetrical negotiation: talk about how much you love the work, talk about the value you provide. You’ll find plenty of resources online on how to do a salary negotiation in a situation where you’re unwilling (or unable) to walk away from the job.

  • {"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}

    You may also like