How do you start freelancing?
If fitting work around your life appeals to you more than the opposite, then freelancing could be the way to go. A career in freelancing offers the freedom and flexibility to set your own hours. This makes it an ideal career move if you are seeking to balance work with other things, such as raising children, studying, caring for elderly parents, or simply because you want more downtime!
Freelancing has become more accessible with the advance of digital technologies, as well as the pandemic making working-from-home more of a mainstream concept for employers. Many industries have freelancing options now, so you can likely find work in a field you’re already familiar with.
The freelance market is growing by the day, and if you want to be competitive, you must prepare accordingly. If you are interested in becoming a successful freelancer but have little or no experience on this topic, then read on to find out more.
Is Freelancing Right for me?
Freelancing has its pros and cons. You must possess a certain mindset to succeed as a freelancer. You control your schedule, which can be a blessing or a curse, depending on your work ethic. Maintain a daily work routine, be ready to juggle several projects at once and continually look for new projects to maintain a flow of work. There is no boss checking what you’re doing. You’re that boss, and you must be strict with yourself in order to succeed.
Being your own boss is a great thing if you’re capable of being disciplined and structured. You work when you want, how you want and as much as you want. You don’t have to book time off to watch your child’s school play or go to a medical appointment. There is no requirement to check with HR before booking a vacation, and you don’t have to be at your desk at 9 am.
With freelancing, you have the freedom to make the most of your peak productivity, without being bound to the office for specific hours. Freelancing enables you to set your schedule so you can take a day off whenever you want. Of course, the downside is that you won’t be paid for that time because there is no such thing as paid leave.
Freelancing is certainly not for everyone. The process of marketing yourself, selling your services, and dealing with clients can be overwhelming. If the idea of doing it all alone is holding you back, consider working with a Coach who can mentor you along the way and help you reach your goals.
How do I find work as a Freelancer?
Most freelancers use online platforms to find work and there are always opportunities out there. Every hour, there are dozens of new job postings added to freelance platforms. Choosing the platform that fits your needs and salary expectations is incredibly important for your success.
Some freelancing websites encourage a “race to the bottom” mentality. Freelancers are forced to constantly lower their prices to win jobs. This doesn’t help anyone – buyers cannot find good quality work and freelancers cannot earn enough money to sustain themselves.
Networking sites like LinkedIn are a great place to promote the work you do and build contacts. Another source of potential clients is attending networking events related to your chosen industry.
Don’t feel discouraged if you don’t secure jobs immediately; it takes time to build connections. When you are starting out as a freelancer, you’re building your reputation from scratch. Once you secure clients and start getting positive feedback for your work, ask them to recommend you to others, in person or on social networks. Never underestimate how valuable word-of-mouth recommendations can be.
By maintaining a good connection with your current clients and providing quality work, you’ll be more likely to secure more consistent jobs in the future and that is when you’ll see your career as a freelancer take off.
How much can I earn as a freelancer?
The beauty of freelancing is that your earnings are not capped in the way it is when you’re a salaried employee. The more work you do, the more you will earn.
Sometimes you’ll work longer hours. There will be times when maintaining a steady flow of work and income means working outside of normal working hours. You may work longer hours than when you had a regular job.
That said, the hard reality is that sometimes there won’t be work. There will be times when you’ll be offered more projects than you can accept, and there will be periods when it seems that no one is hiring. To combat this, consider building up a small client base before quitting your day job.
Your hourly rate or project price heavily depends on your skillset and experience, but don’t work for peanuts. Know your worth and price your services accordingly. Knowing how to Price Your Services is crucial for the longevity of your career. It is important you get it right.
Interested but need to talk it over with someone?
Taking the leap into freelancing can feel overwhelming. I am offering a free 30-minute telephone consultation to help start you on your exciting new career in freelancing. Please complete the form on my website, and I will get back to you within 24 hours.