Freedom to work your own hours, decide which jobs you want to do and to be your own boss. Sounds perfect doesn’t it?
Many of us dream about becoming our own boss and like the idea of the flexible hours and working from home or anywhere we want to. And it’s all achievable as long as you prepare yourself well in advance. The reasons many fail as a freelancer is the lack of preparation, research and additional skills prior to setting off on their freedom from the nine to five.
Ask yourself these questions (be honest with yourself) and write down your answers and keep them somewhere you can see them:
- What is the freelance work you want to focus on?
- Do you have the specialist skills for this work?
- Are you good at time management?
- Can you cope with deadlines?
- Are you a good communicator and negotiator?
- Can you manage your finances effectively?
- How are you going to find work and clients?
These are just some of the areas you need to get your head around well in advance of you taking that plunge. Otherwise it could end up as a complete failure.
Becoming a freelancer is not only about the professional work you have studied and trained to provide, it’s also involves you doing a lot more other tasks which you might have not felt with before. These can be areas like your financial book keeping and tax returns, focused administration so you are fully organised, building you own personal and professional brand, marketing yourself effectively, networking and much more.
Just imagine yourself waking up on a Monday morning with the sun shining outside the window. You’re your own boss now and you are saying to yourself ‘another 20 mins in bed sounds like a plan’. No, get out of bed and get yourself ready for the challenges ahead. The phone goes and one of your clients need a job turned around quickly and needs it before the close of day. You’ve realised that you run out of coffee in the kitchen and you just can’t start the day without that shot of caffeine. The phone goes again and it’s a potential new client who wants to meet you today to discuss a project you could do. Then you realise that you had a task from the Friday before which you needed to finish for another client and decided to leave it until Monday morning so you could go out with friends at the weekend. How are you feeling now even though the sun is shinning outside the window? These things do happen when you become a freelancer, plus many other situations. But it is so easy to avoid these situations if you get all organised and prepared well in advance.
The benefits of becoming a freelancer outweigh the benefits of working as an employee for someone in many ways. The rewards are so satisfying and you become someone who know how to stay in control of your own destiny. Many freelancers who have succeeded have never looked back and would never change what they have for anything else. You will find that you are an expert at managing your time, your finances and build you confidence. You just need to fully understand the pitfalls before you start so that you can fully avoid them.
If you are thinking about becoming a freelancer, take a look at our short course ‘Become a Freelancer’ short course which helps you to understand everything to get you started and shows you how. You can also contact us to talk about your ideas by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org