The freelance workforce is growing and it’s on the rise across the globe. A ‘Life-first’ attitude is observed among the millennials who’re choosing self-employment for the utilization of their skills.
The world of freelance is undoubtedly colourful, but it’s not all bed of roses. There are pros & cons, ups & downs to everything and freelancing is no exception! Know your challenges before you begin. And if you’re still wondering if you should get started as a gigger, there’s a lot more to consider about.
Landing potential clients
One of the key challenges you face as a freelancer is getting work. Sure, getting clients is no rocket science. But when it comes to freelancing, it is a task to find good clients. Sometimes even pouring hours into various sites, walking into offices & cold-emailing potential clients every day doesn’t work. So, what does? Stop chasing clients, instead, let them find you! While this may sound crazy, it is the first step to consistent work. Fortunately, the internet has made freelance work more accessible.
Registering yourself on freelancing platforms is one of the best ways to become discoverable to clients who’re looking for people with the same skillsets and interests as you. If you desire to build a quality brand, producing content and setting up a professional website that features your best work is a proven concept.
If getting work is difficult, what about getting paid?
When you have a 9 to 5 job, you get a pay cheque at the end of every month that guarantees you a stable income. But as a freelancer, you never really know when the next pay cheque is coming in!
People tend to look for the cheapest option and it’s obvious for you to get frustrated when they quote you an amount less than your worth. You can play down the frustration by simply being clear about your rates and take only handful of retainer clients. They’re not always the safe bait, but they are the closest thing to a stable income.
At times, balancing client expectations can be a real struggle, especially if you’re pressurised with unrealistic deadlines for the assignments. When you work from home at your convenience, you tend to become lazy and procrastinate. And on some days, there’s so much work that you lose track of time and hence, you miss the deadlines!
Firstly, understand your limitations. When you freelance, it’s a one-man show. So it is important to know how much you can deliver in a given amount of time. If a new client calls, do not readily accept the assignment. Give yourself a wiggle room! Organize your task-list by priority so that you don’t get swamped with unfinished projects. For each assignment you take, set yourself a closing date and break it down into milestones.
Emotional Roller Coaster
Majority of people consider freelancing because they want to achieve peace-of-mind from their work. But that’s not exactly how freelancing works. If finding gigs that match your profile has already knackered you down, wait until you get rejected!
There might be times when you don’t get enough gigs and feel hopeless. A client will fire you or maybe the project that you spent hours on working late night will not get accepted. This may seem a little tough & emotionally draining. At such times, talk to people, take a break to refresh your mind. And when work seems to dry up, remind yourself why you started out as a freelancer.
Making the decision to be a full-time freelancer can be scary, especially if you have no experience. But the more you know it and the more you explore, the more you’ll be prepared to take the leap into a colourful world of freelance.
Freelancing is a considerable gift and there are more aspects to it than just ‘being your own boss’. It is not just about bombarding clients with emails to try and land potential work. It’s all about building your business that requires a lot of planning, skills and focus. Do not opt for it until you’re really sure.