Have you ever been asked to take something on pro bono – without pay?
This is hard because it is in our nature to want to help others. However, everyone has limited resources even if that is simply the time you have available to complete a task.
Here is how to politely decline pro bono work:
1. Express appreciation
Thank them for asking you to be a part of the project and share your interest.
“That is an interesting project, I really appreciate you thinking of me.”
2. Express that you are unable to, due to other commitments you have made
“I appreciate you thinking of me for this project. As much as I would love to be involved, it’s just not something that I am able to take on right now. Please keep me in mind for future projects.”
If you are continually asked by a person or company to do pro bono work, you could try
“I really love supporting the community. I love supporting these areas. I have taken on a substantial amount of volunteer work at the moment and my schedule does not allow for any more however, please keep me in mind in the future as I would love to be able to help.”
Are you in a line of work where you are continually asked to take projects on pro bono? How have you handled it? Do you think any of these tips would be helpful to others in this situation?
I hope this post is helpful to you if you ever need to communicate that you will not be able to take on a pro bono project. I look forward to reading your comments.