It is a fact that freelancing comes with lots of perks you can enjoy, but true to the word, it is not a walk in the park. There are numerous challenges that you will come across especially if you are just starting out. You really need to think hard, before you can eventually decide to become a full-time freelancer. In case you are employed and want to be a full-time freelancer, make it a point to consider your transition period lest you find yourself in an awkward situation. Your skills and talents can help kick-start your career, but you will have to learn about a lot of things in order to be successful. As a matter of fact, it is not all about lulling around and making money in your pajamas.
What are some of the skills you will need?
The fact that there is no boss hovering over your shoulder does not mean that you shouldn’t be responsible. In fact, you will have to develop a mindset that keeps you going without anyone pushing you to do something. It is true that you can set your own hours, but take note that some clients can only call between the hours of 5-9. And so, you can go to work even at times that you were expecting to rest. In this case, you must develop time management skills that will come in handy - you must be flexible!
It is also important for you to develop some networking skills that are pretty vital for freelancing. If you don’t, you can expect some hiccups in your career. For instance, there are times that you will have little or no work. In order to pay bills, you will need to reach out to new clients or contact someone in your field.
Marketing is an integral part of freelancing and can guarantee consistency in the flow of projects you have to work on. Also, at the same time, you will have to learn how to harness the power of social media to your benefit. You can set your career on a success path only if you are customer-oriented and these platforms are best for marketing your services.
Moreover, it is equally important to know what market rates are all about, how to make a good bargain, and at the same time how to retain clients for a pretty long time. In this way, your freelancing career will be a breeze.
What obstacles you will come across?
As a freelancer, you need to give up so many things that most people hold dear. These include; job security, medical benefits, financial security, and anything related. You have to give up these goodies offered by the corporate world and strive to chart your way up as a reputable, dependable, freelancer who beats deadlines without being pushed.
In the course of freelancing, you must learn how to multi-task, at the same time get quality work delivered in time. This means that you will be dealing with different clients, who have varying need that must be met. If you are not sure about this, then you can actually find it pretty difficult to stay afloat.
It's true that freelancing will offer you quite a number of benefits; nevertheless, these will not come on a silver platter. There is cut-throat competition in whatever industry you will be working, and so you need to up your game in order to get clients who can depend on your services. If you do not sharpen your skills, you will end up disappearing in the clouds of oblivion. Always try to find out what is happening in your niche, how to get high paying clients, and master the do’s and don’ts of freelancing.
Tough to get jobs
It is imperative to note that during the first few days, it can be pretty difficult to get hired with a wrong strategy in place. In this case, make it a point that you know where to get jobs, how to apply for the jobs, negotiation process, as well as, how to set you minimal rate.
Attitude, goals and mindset
This is a very big challenge for freelancers out there. It doesn’t matter whether you are experienced or not, you must set realistic goals. Freelancing is not a get-rich-quick type of work that you mint thousands of dollars overnight. It takes focus and determination for you to achieve anything substantial.
If you do not separate your working desk, there will be a lot of distractions from every corner you can think of. If you want to work and get some good amount of money, then definitely you must avoid distractions at all costs. You must have a room as your office, tell members of your family to respect your working hours, and do not compromise on being send on errands during “working hours”.
The best thing is that with all these distractions you can always find a solution. All in all, freelancing is not snap-your-finger-pie-in-the-sky kind of job.