Choosing to work from home seems like it could be the best thing to ever happen to you, but there are a few things you really need to take into consideration before beginning work from your bedroom. Since freelancing is becoming increasingly popular, more and more people are doing it.
That means, you, me, and the rest of the world are competing for the best jobs, projects, and clientele. The competition among freelancers is vastly growing, therefore you need to be aware of several factors before you decide to make the jump into the market. Being self-employed is not as easy as it sounds, nor is it for the faint-hearted, it’s some real work. Let’s take a look.
You Don’t Get Out
I’m serious, say goodbye to the outside world. Your life is about to revolve around your computer for a very long time. You can definitely get lucky and have a chance to meet with clients that live in your area, but that’s pure luck. When you want to get out, make sure that you do. Cabin Fever will set in after just a few days. Vitamin D from our good friend, the Sun, will make it all better, then you can get back to work.
There are Scams
Believe it or not, not everything you see online is true. There are hundreds of companies that want you to believe they are fully functioning and growing businesses. When I receive an e-mail from a ‘quickly growing, high-paying organization’ I usually won’t respond. If one of these e-mails sounds legitimate, then I might take the bait, but not without some questions.
Always ask how long that particular person has been with the company, and how many employees they have. These are good ways of telling if something is a scam. Two pieces of advice: 1) if it sounds too good to be true, it is 2) if they aren’t willing to discuss the job over Skype, you don’t need them.
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Taking an interview over Skype will protect both parties. Another great way to avoid scams is to build a contract, if you have a contract, you have an added layer of protection that will keep you covered if things need to go legal and will set the expectations out before you begin working on the project.
Contrary to popular belief, there are no apps, software suites or other tools that are going to make your life any easier. While it might be good to make sure you have something to manage your time, nothing beyond that is going to make you rich and famous. The only thing that pays off in freelancing is working your butt off. This means working hard and all the time.
The more time that you put into your job, the more money you’re going to make. Hard work pays off in almost any industry, and freelancing is not an exception to that general rule. Since you need to work hard, you need to understand that you will be working more hours than you would if you were working a typical job. It’s totally worth it in the end though!
Just Say ‘NO’
There are going to be times when you’re asked to do a job, and it might be pretty good paying, but things might get a little out of hand. Make sure that you know everything that you’re expected to do for the job before you begin. I suggest laying out the ground rules ahead of time with a contract. Sometimes on these higher-paying jobs your employer might feel as though you owe them more than what you were hired to do. They will ask for more work, or for a favor. Just say ‘no’. It’s the best way to protect yourself. Never do more than you were hired to do.
There is Plenty of Work to go Around
It’s important to understand that you don’t need to jump at every job that presents itself. If there is something that makes you uncomfortable, or that you’re not sure you have the skills for, just move on. It’s one of the best ways to ensure that you’re going to be in a good spot. There are so many jobs for you to choose from, if you know where you’re supposed to be looking.
Don’t waste your time and the time of an employer with something you’re not qualified to do. Beyond that, realize that you work for yourself because you’re self-disciplined enough to understand what your abilities are. Don’t ever start something that you might not be able to do.