Nowadays, people choose to work from home and more often become self-employed freelancers. Freelancing is as popular as ever as employees become their own bosses. It should be specified that a freelancer is not a part of any company. They are independent career-builders responsible for their failures and success.
Recent years saw a dramatic freelancing growth with 1.2 billion freelancers around the world. They report better health, a free lifestyle, job flexibility, and sufficient earnings.
We know that freelancing for beginners may seem an insurmountable challenge as there are so many peculiarities of freelancing in different areas to consider and learn. In this article, you will find five useful pieces of advice for freelancers before starting a self-employed career.
Before you choose to freelance, explore different tools that will help you in your future career. If you wonder “what does a freelancer do?” and want to become an independent worker, we know how to help you. Freelancers perform different projects, tasks, and services commissioned by the client during a specific time. Depending on what work they do, like writing, designing, video editing, translating, etc there are many useful tools to manage their tasks. Freelancers should be able to quickly master different tools and software. So if you work with video files, click here to find out about converting.
These tools are universal and will assist every freelancer in their work:
i). Calendar Tools
It is crucial for a freelancer to keep track of deadlines as every day brings new tasks and challenges. Calendar tools will be useful for all people, both disciplined and not. Having a digital calendar is indispensable for freelancers, and thankfully there are many decent options on the Internet. You can try Google Calendar, Calendly, etc to get alerts and all necessary details in one place.
ii). Storage Tools
With freelancing for beginners being a daunting task, we recommend paying attention to cloud storage services. You may face a challenge when there is not much storage space on your device. Besides, these tools allow you not only to store files but also share and collaborate on them. It is a great backup solution as files are saved automatically in cloud storage. There are many good free cloud storage services, so choose yours.
iii). Finance Tools
When you work from home, you should take care of the means for receiving payments. Freelancers often find foreign clients that require a credible tool for money transferring from abroad. Choose secure tools available in many countries and do not charge high transaction fees. You should also consider services for budget management.
A freelancer needs to be a multitasking, versatile person who is ready to meet tight deadlines and communicate with different commissioners. In order to become a successful freelancer, you should develop specific character traits to withstand challenges bravely. Who is a professional freelancer? They are persistent, initiative, self-disciplined, communicable, hard-working, and more. You should not obligatorily possess all these traits but self-develop to deal with clients and self-control.
This trait is necessary for self-employed people as they tend to overwork and sleep very little time. You should not burn the midnight oil and then be tired all day. Set working hours and live a full life, communicating with friends and family. It’d be better to stick to office hours to contact clients timely. However, your schedule may change if you work with overseas commissioners.
Starting a freelancing career, consider that you are responsible for your work and budget.No one will supervise your work and speed you up to meet deadlines. In order to work from home effectively, you have to be accountable for yourself. Freelancers should stay focused on their tasks, work hard, sticking to deadlines and the regime.
iii). Communication Skills
Freelancers constantly communicate with their commissioners to get good tasks and perform them according to the client’s needs. You should know how to lead professional negotiation over the phone, online call, and in person. Master different communication platforms, be open-minded, friendly, do not show negative emotions, provide examples of your work if needed, and know the value of your work and time.
If you ask “what does a freelancer do?”, we can say that they are constantly dealing with stressful situations. Once you work from home, it doesn’t mean you are free from obligations, tiresome tasks, and awful people. It is necessary to control your feelings, emotions, and time to perform work timely. Freelancing is emotionally demanding as you are in severe competition with other people who can do work for less money. It can leave you without new tasks or decent remuneration for work. You need to search for new assignments when completing tasks, as this profession is popular now, and many people are hunting for new commissions round the clock.
These tips will help you to relieve stress and stay productive:
i). Take Control
Unexpected challenges can knock you off the wagon, but self-control and a cool head help manage stress. It is recommended to establish a specific time per day when you can worry. Write down everything that makes you stressed and try to find solutions to solve those problems. You can control your stress by scoring its degree, so over time, it’ll be easier to reasonably deal with worries.
It’s not surprising that freelancing for beginners is a stressful endeavor. Feeling anxious, you should ask for support from your nearest and dearest, read forums and chats where freelancers share common problems, and learn to self-soothe. Slow breathing, classical music, fun videos, mint tea, and walking are efficient ways to find balance and focus on tasks.
It’s known that physical activity helps reduce mental tension. Plan your working day to have time for exercise. It will boost your health and allow you to distract from negative thoughts. Specialists recommend exercising at least twenty minutes per day, so you can use special software to track time. Consider this piece of advice for freelancers as it’ll make you increase productivity and deal with stress.
Every freelancer uses a platform to find clients. That’s why it’s a must to create a quality portfolio to show your proficiency. Checking your portfolio, clients will be confident in your abilities to perform quality work. But how can you show your professionalism and get any commissions if you are new to freelancing? These tips will help you stand out with your solid portfolio and make successful deals.
i). Include Important Elements
You should include in your portfolio explanations of what you can do for a client. Instead of showing your works and saying you can do the same for them, say that you can boost client’s conversion or increase sales, depending on your skills. Tell in the portfolio about your work style and what proves your proficiency, like diplomas, certificates, courses, etc. Moreover, add to the portfolio your contact information, so that people can get in touch with you easily if they need your services.
ii). Focus On What Work You Want to Do
Another helpful piece of advice for freelancers creating a portfolio is specifying their preferences on work type and clients. Explain what work you like and provide examples of companies and projects you worked on. You should show your ambition to work on quality projects and perform complex and creative tasks that make your portfolio memorable and worth attention. Tell what kind of people you prefer to work with, like hard-working, punctual, or diligent that shows your professionalism.
iii). Update Your Portfolio Regularly
You should add new projects to your portfolio, especially if there are not many of them. In case you have any examples of your work, keep updating them to show that you self-develop. Refreshing portfolio items is an essential thing for making them attractive. Every new project displays your experience and skills, so include files, links, screenshots, and more.
At first, freelancing for beginners may not bring much money. Therefore, it is essential to have extra savings and manage the budget properly. One month you can have many expensive projects, while the other can be not so successful. It’s possible to do part-time freelancing before leaving your main job. When you become experienced enough and have regular clients, you can fire and do full-time freelance. However, do not rely on regular commissioners and seek new projects. Thus, a financial cushion is a must for a freelancer, and it’s necessary to have enough savings before you become a skilled freelancer with a strong portfolio and high expertise.
Thus, we can answer the question: what does a freelancer do? These independent workers create their workplace, plan a budget, communicate with clients, and are responsible for many more things in their life. Becoming a freelancer is not easy but once you decide to start a self-employed career, believe in your success.