Many of us would work for ourselves if we could. After all, this is the primary reason why people choose to start their own business in the first place.
Becoming a freelancer allows you to work for yourself, but not everybody understands what this lifestyle involves or how to get started. So, what is freelancing? We’ve put together a guide with all of the answers.
Let’s dive in.
Although plenty of people are familiar with this term, not everybody understands its definition. For those who are unaware, the act of freelancing refers to working independently as a professional instead of working directly for an employer.
In practice, this involves the freelancer completing individual projects for other businesses.
Part of what makes this career choice so difficult in its initial stages is that it can be challenging to generate a full-time income when you just start out as a freelance professional. For this reason, most freelancers choose to stay at their current job while completing side projects.
When they have enough clients to meet their financial requirements, they take the plunge and begin freelancing full-time.
As you might guess, one of the most notable benefits of becoming a freelancer is the amount of flexibility that you experience. In general, you will be able to wake up whenever you’d like and adjust your workday accordingly.
You could even break up your projects into different time blocks, allowing you to complete some of your work in the morning and the rest of it in the evening.
Additionally, you have the freedom to work from anywhere you like. This could be on a beach abroad or at your local coffee shop. Many freelancers tend to have a sort of “home base” in the form of a home office, though. Our home base tool also serves as a great digital platform to help you manage your ongoing projects.
Perhaps the greatest positive attribute of freelancing is having full control of the type of work you complete. This is particularly enticing for those who pursue creative professions, such as writers or graphic designers.
Those who hold creative positions at a company often find that they aren't using their skills in the way they would like to. Overall, these factors allow you to achieve a much greater level of mental health in most cases.
In general, the biggest risk of freelancing is failing to secure a sufficient number of clients. Similarly, you might lose one of your most profitable clients due to factors outside of your control.
Freelancers are also responsible for paying taxes as independent contractors. This means you need to set aside an appropriate amount each quarter in order to satisfy this obligation.
Since you technically operate as a business owner, you will also need to budget for your own health insurance.
As a freelance worker, you also won’t be able to take advantage of 401(k) contribution matching. Put simply, the biggest risk associated with being a freelancer is money.
Fortunately, all of these risks can be mitigated by taking the appropriate precautions. One of the best ways to do so is to properly manage your ongoing projects. You can visit this resource to learn more about how our project management tool can help.
You can begin freelancing simply by accepting a project from somebody else. In order to do this consistently, though, you will need to have a steady flow of work.
This means that you need to place a heavy emphasis on networking, leveraging your existing relationships, etc.
As you begin completing more work as a freelancer, it’s also highly recommended that you open a business bank account, establish an online presence for yourself as a professional, and even incorporate yourself as a business. This will allow you to properly function as a freelancer when it comes to finances.
For example, it’s much easier to pay taxes when you have a comprehensive, accessible archive of all of your payments for a given time period.
So, keep in mind that it’s relatively easy to get started as a freelancer. This is especially true if you only plan on completing side projects at first.
In order to succeed as a freelancer, there are certain steps that you’ll need to take.
For instance, you’ll need to have a strong time management policy in place that you hold yourself accountable for. This means setting a schedule, removing distractions from your work environment, and being able to ensure that you meet the deadlines you establish for yourself.
Additionally, it’s essential that you remain aware of the current state of your business and its future growth. This will allow you to optimize your business development and grow at a notable pace.
It’s also in your best interest to optimize the way you make proposals to clients. The same can be said with how you draft your contracts. You can check out this page to see how our proposal tool can streamline this process for you.
By handling these obligations, you’ll find that you streamline your freelance tasks and have a much easier time generating revenue.
These answers to “what is freelancing” are sure to put you on the right track.
Want to learn more about what we have to offer? Feel free to get started with Hectic today for free and see how Hectic can help you work smarter, not harder as a freelancer.