With the rise of co-working spaces such as WeWork, more and more people are choosing to take the plunge to become their own bosses. You’ve come to this article because you’re thinking that plunge may be right for you. Before you dive head first into murky waters there are a couple of questions to consider. What skills do successful freelancers have? And how can you cultivate success in this new and exciting but high stakes global work place?
This is one of the most important skills that any freelancer should cultivate. If you have a skill that people need you can capitalise on it and this will cultivate success. Compare your skill set with the job offers on freelancing job sites to see if your skill set is in high demand. If yes, you can work towards creating your online professional presence. If no, what can you do now to boost your earning potential? There are so many online resources available that there is almost no excuse not to educate yourself.
If you are already established in your field, how can you use your contacts and friends in the business to create a niche that is all your own?
The struggle is real when it comes to creating your own income. Cultivating discipline is a must because meeting deadlines and making sure you get your work done is the only way to be successful. Remember, you are your own representative and if you are not meeting your deadlines this will affect the rest of your business. Discipline applies not just to your performance but also to your rest time – don’t take more than you can handle, knowing when to say no is maybe the hardest lesson to learn as a freelancer.
How organised are you? As a freelancer the expectation is that your ability to organise yourself is finely tuned. Whilst this may sound like another word for discipline, what we are talking about here is the day-to-day running of your life, your dependents and your household around your now flexible schedule. You will be tasked with more because the people around you may not have the flexibility you do. Having schedule that works for you, your business and those around you takes preparation.
If you are uncomfortable with self-promotion, now is the time to work it. Fake it till you make it has never been more relevant than to your freelancing career. You are the only one who will sell yourself and the only way to gain clients is to convince them, through cultivating confidence that you are the right one for them.
No matter what happens, a freelancer must be flexible – this means with your timetable but also with the uncomfortable process of chasing invoices and accepting that there may not be a regular pay check at the end of every month. Think seriously about what you need incoming and work out how many hours you have to work before committing to the freelance work/life style.