What to Consider Before Becoming a Freelancer

For the employee stuck in the 9-5 workday, the allure of working from home without the watchful eyes of a manager can be especially compelling.  Many decide to follow the call and become a freelancer in order to become their own boss. However, not everyone can handle the freedom and responsibility that comes with the freelancing life. In order to determine whether becoming a freelancer is right for you, consider the following questions:

Can You Offer a Service?

Before rushing wildly into starting a business, you’ll need to undergo a level of planning and preparation. First, think exactly about the type of services you want to offer. Freelancing covers a wide spectrum of fields, including proofreading, writing, and graphic design. There are an endless number of services freelancers can offer, each with its own details concerning clients, job market, and business regulations. In addition, the prospective freelancer should carefully determine whether the

Do you have a Family Life?

Many freelancers run their business from the comfort of their own home. However, there are a number of distractions that may prevent the freelancer from fully concentrating on his or her work. Children, household chores, phone calls, family life – all these distractions can prevent freelancers from maintaining a strict schedule. Working at a coffee shop or a dedicated office is a viable option, but if you are determined to work from home, make sure that you can handle deadlines and workflow without distractions.

Do you have the Right Temperament?

As mentioned before, the freelancing life is not for everyone. Freelancing is not an easy means to quick cash – it requires dedication and independence that is uncharacteristic of a conventional job. Freelancers need to stay motivated and diligent, especially during the tough initial years, in order to see their business through.  If you’re the type of person that requires structure, stability, and security, then you may want to stay away from freelancing.

Can you build a Network?

Oftentimes, many of the freelancer’s clients come from referrals or trusted colleagues who give their recommendations. In order to increase the likelihood of success, build a network of contacts and connections that can provide referrals for your service. However, the need for a network extends beyond customers and clients – others can help you with various aspects of your business, ranging from marketing, budgeting, or simple organization. By building a network, freelancers can extend their potential sources of resources, knowledge and information.

What about Finances?

Depending on the type of service, freelancers will need to possess financing and budget skills in order to achieve success. Some tips to remind freelancers include officially registering the business and making sure that the taxes are always up-to-date. In addition, creating a marketing or business plan can help freelancers determine exactly the type of budget and costs that will go into starting a business. Remember – a freelancing business is just like any other business, and needs to be taken seriously.

Starting a freelancing business is a daunting task, a decision that is not to be made lightly. However, it is a choice that can lead to potentially high rewards, satisfaction and self-employment. By considering the questions above, the prospective candidate can determine whether the life of a freelancer is right for them.

Rachel Hyun Kim is a writer for Resource Nation, an online resource that gives advice such as B2B lead generation for small businesses and entrepreneurs. Rachel has written on a variety of topics, ranging from credit card processing to medical billing software.

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