It is an exciting time to be a freelancer. Never before has it been so acceptable to work remotely. Businesses are seeing the savings to their bottom line and finding they can afford a higher quality of work, by hiring the freelancer. Writers, developers, designers, consultants, virtual assistants, editors and many other workers have learned they can do their jobs without the grind of the 9-5 office. The worldwide web has made getting information, sharing information, and getting clients easier than ever before. So, how do you begin? Let’s look at a few ways successful freelancers made the transition.
We are not going to tell you that you will immediately bring in as much money as you would working your day job. That would be untrue. We will tell you it is possible to eventually earn what you are earning at your traditional job and even more. But, you are going to have to work hard to get there. You will need to make some adjustments to afford the transition period. But, once you have taken the leap, you will know it is worth every ounce of effort you have invested.
Get real with your expenses
Anytime you are going to make an employment change, you need to build some financial muscle. The first order of business is to trim the fat from your expenses. You will need to pay your expenses with a smaller budget, so anywhere you can reduce will help. Keep in mind, freelancing already means less expense for gasoline, wear and tear on the family car, less money for clothes, cosmetics, and in some cases child care. Put it all on paper and determine how much income you will need before you leave your 9-5 job.
In the same frame of mind, you will need to save 3-6 months worth of expense money to get you through the lean times. There will be lean times while you are building your client base with paying customers. On the bright side, since you have a lean budget, you will not have to save as much.
Time management is the single most important tool a freelancer has. The freelancer thinks they will have all the time they need but in reality, they find they have less time since they are merging their business life with their personal life. No one is handing you assignments to do like they do in an office. You have to find your own clients, pitch them, secure the jobs, do the jobs, bill the jobs, and follow-up with the job payments. This is while you are home and your spouse thinks nothing of asking you to run errands. While you are taking care of your family responsibilities.
The greatest gift you can give yourself as a freelancer is time management software. This is a great way to discover where you are spending your time. Soon you will discover what time-consuming activities pay off and what is just wasted time. Get your business started on the right foot with time management software.
Now you are ready
Prepare your workspace, secure some clients, write your new resume and prepare a price sheet and portfolio. You have laid the foundation you need to say goodbye to the 9-5 job and hello to the freedom of freelancing. The rest is up to you. Your future is in your own hands. And you will do great!
Wendy Dessler is a Super-Connector at OutreachMama
Wendy is a super-connector with OutreachMama who helps businesses find their audience online through outreach, partnerships, and networking. She frequently writes about the latest advancements in digital marketing and focuses her efforts on developing customized blogger outreach plans depending on the industry and competition.