When your PM says no to your 1099 request

If you are converting your job to a 1099 role, the program manager is likely going to say "No."

Of course they would. You're making his life harder! If he can get away with not doing anything he would definitely prefer that.

Here are your options at that point:

  • Bluff that you're quitting
  • Actually quit
  • Stay on as a W2

Each has pros and cons. If you bluff and it works, great! You got yourself a gig.

If you bluff and the PM calls you on it, it's a little embarassing.

If you actually quit, you have to get a new job (or find another 1099 gig) which may or may not be what you wanted. You might also be unemployed for a few months and lose money.

If you stay on as a W2, you will have a job but feel resentful. Nothing like an aspiring-1099 scorned by a PM...

To avoid most of the downsides of these options, you need to prepare.

Here is what I recommend:

  • Shore up your relationships with your program manager, your government client, and your network (friends, professional colleagues, etc.)
  • Get a backup job offer
  • Save up a "FU money" fund that allows you to live for 3-6 months without a job at your current lifestyle

This gives you leverage and options. So when your PM says no, you can safely mention you will leave the company in 3-4 weeks if 1099 isn't possible and the worst case scenario is you get a self-funded vacation while you line up another job.

The best case is the PM gets freaked out and caves to all your 1099 demands.


Subscribe to receive Chapter 5 for free:

How to model and compare your 1099 income to your W2 compensation.

    We respect your privacy. Unsubscribe at anytime.

    Leave a comment

    Please note, comments must be approved before they are published