Freelancing can be a great way to work, giving you an extra income as an addition to your day job or the chance to strike out doing work you really enjoy. However, though it is great to earn money on your own terms, freelancing has pros and cons. Here are three tips to help you as you are starting out as a freelancer:
1. Be Organized
Whether freelancing is your main job or a side gig, organization is vital. As a freelancer, you will have to set up your own structures and systems as well as doing the actual freelance work you are being paid for. When starting out, it might be tempting to wing it, but to make a success of your work it is best to get organized as soon as possible. It can be a nightmare trying to find all your expenses for your tax return at the end of the year or to not be clear on your pricing structure when talking to clients. You don’t have to go overboard; create systems appropriate to the size of your work that will help you manage your work and grow your business at a rate that suits you. Simple things like getting a work diary and a simple filing system can be a great start.
2. Be Professional
Following on from my last point, being professional in your freelance work makes a big difference to how you are perceived and how you feel about your work. Though setting your own working hours is a perk of freelancing, it is a good idea to create some core hours so that you know what you are doing one day to the next and so that if appropriate, clients know when they can contact you. Some freelancers still get dressed up to work at home – it can help you to get in the right mindset for work! Enjoy the perks of freelancing but don’t forget to create a professional front.
3. Set Boundaries
When starting out as a freelancer, you may find that you need to set boundaries for yourself and others. Sure, it is great to have the flexibility of being your own boss, but to succeed as a freelancer the work does need to get done. You may need to let the people in your life know that you are not “available”, just because you are working from home. The sooner you and the people around you are clear about how you work (which you have the luxury of designing) the easier it will be to get used to.
Bio: Jen Smith is a Life Coach, Mentor & Writer. She has tried many career paths herself and now helps people achieve their goals and dreams.