So we talked about job and money in part 1 and if you are still keen exploring your options in freelancing, then join me in sharing the part two of this freelancing series.
Nothing gives you more flexibility than freelancing. I love that I can schedule work that fits my own schedule that allows me to plan ahead for holidays or having little projects of my own like MiddleMe. Even if I turned down a job to shift focus on other areas, it does not translate life and death for me. Unless a full-time job, I wouldn’t be able to tell my boss that I don’t want more work or I don’t want to be a part of this important project because I want to go home on time.
As a freelancer, you can turn away jobs you don’t want to commit. I have turned down jobs where there is a conflict of interest or where I don’t have that amount of time that the clients are looking for. If you do it politely and pleasantly enough, it does not hurt your reputation but in fact, raise your standards a lot more because employers would now think you are not just an entry level freelancer.
Flexibility also allows me to drop whatever I’m doing for a YouTube quickie like watching cat videos. Sometimes when a certain task taxed my brain and an afternoon nap suddenly sound delicious, I suddenly realized I can take a nap! Yay! Clients only cared if you complete the required task on schedule and not what happens in the process which is a lot different in the corporate world.
What it translate to me:
I get to spend a lot of time with my kittens and my loved ones. I love to take an afternoon swim and basking in the sun. When an idea pops up for MiddleMe, I can drop everything I’m doing and work on exploring the idea.
The Other Side:
I’m pretty much on my own. So much so I might not see a human face physically for days unless I drag myself out of the house to run errands. When the craving of human interactions and when my cats can’t fill the void, I’ll call up my friends and family over FaceTime for a quick chat.
In a way, being a freelancer is kinda like running your own business on a small scale because the only person you need to manage is yourself and no one else. And your clients are your bosses. They are the ones who pays you your income. Unlike the corporate world, you can’t exactly choose your boss unless you quit your job, in freelancing you can choose who you want to work with. Precisely it is not a million dollar project that you can’t turn it down, you actually can turn a job down and not have sleepless nights over it.
However if you are picky all the time, you’ll find yourself hardly booked for any job. This is because there are thousands of freelancers out there who are willing to do the same job at a fraction of the price. And like a real business, a customer can slam you on social media and black mouth you in front of other potential customers. In a freelancing world, we likely to be reliant on a few platforms, clients who are displeased with your work can leave you a poor comment or blacklist you. Unlike the real world, business can’t close just like that as easily as you close down that freelancing profile of yours. This does leave a lot of bad names and trust issues in the freelancing world.
There are also a lot of different type of clients out there and some of them demand perfect execution from you yet pay you only peanuts. Well, when one pay you peanuts, they do get monkeys.
So what does this translate for me:
I learn to manage expectations and work within clients’ demands. I also learn to negotiate and express my own suggestions but I have to remember that it’s their project, their company and I’m just a contractor.
The Other Side:
You might meet nasty clients or clients who made you do a lot of work yet refuse to pay you citing substandard.
Enjoy what you read? Look out for the final installment of I am a Freelancer.
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