Have you ever imagined what it would be like to make your own hours, decide on your own deadlines and be your own boss? Must be a liberating feeling for those who actually do it, right? What would you say if we told you that you could, in fact, feel the same sense of empowerment and freedom by stepping into the world of freelancing?
There is this nonsensical notion today that people who “freelance” are the ones who find it challenging to land a “real” job. However, you could not be more wrong. Freelancers are basically the directors, the financial managers and the owners of their own brand. Standing apart from conventional jobs, freelancing has taken the world by storm today as more and more people are embracing the benefits offered by freelancing and by being an independent professional.
That said, there are many things that you must bear in mind if you finally decide to work for nobody but yourself. Here are the top 7 things to consider before you step into the world of freelancing!
1. What is your motivation behind becoming a self-employed individual?
The most important consideration before jumping headfirst into freelancing is introspecting and asking yourself if you are doing it for the right reasons. If you wish to enjoy flexibility in your life, not be answerable to anyone for your own decisions, spend more time with your friends and family and be your own boss, you have taken this decision for the right reasons. However, if you are not satisfied with your job profile or have troubles with your employer, you might want to rethink before quitting your regular job.
2. Can you motivate yourself?
A large part of being a self-employed individual constitutes of indulging in self-encouragement and self-motivation. Being a freelancer naturally means being responsible for your own success and failures. You will be your own mentor, guide, advisor, motivational guru, and coach. There will be no team or colleagues to give you a step up or step in with words of encouragement when things go wrong. No, we are not trying to scare you. But you need to consider this aspect before saying “yes” to freelancing.
3. Can you take the reins of client acquisition into your own hands?
In order to succeed in the freelancing world, you also need to find appropriate work. Client acquisition is an essential part of being a freelancer. Without a regular inflow of work, you cannot guarantee a steady income, and without a steady income, there is no way you will be able to pay your monthly bills. Therefore, you need to consider if you will be able to find sufficient work on your own. Word of mouth is a popular thing when it comes to freelancing. So are your family and friends. Therefore, you might want to ask around and see if anyone is looking for services that fall within your domain. Chances are, you’ll find ample clients this way.
4. Does the entire process of freelancing match your lifestyle?
Yet again, before embracing the lifestyle of a freelancer, you must consider if your current lifestyle goes with the tasks involved in working as a freelancer. You need to make sure that you can take sufficient time out from your daily schedule to work. It makes no sense to go from a 9 to 5 job stuck behind an office desk to a 9 to 5 job stuck doing house errands. Therefore, think smart and consider the kind of life you lead and how you can mingle your freelancing journey with it.
5. Do you need insurance?
Being a freelancer does not imply that you are free of the risks and threats to your business that come with being your own boss. It is imperative that you invest in business insurance so that you are legally protected should things take a sour turn at work. Having proper insurance in place can also save you a lot of hassle as well as money in the future. So, choose the right plan according to the nature of your business!
6. Can you create an adequate online presence for yourself and your work?
To succeed as a freelancer, you also need to be able to market your brand and services as well as make your business known to the target audience. Social media is a potent tool and relying on these platforms to create an online presence is a wise move to ensure you do not run out of jobs anytime soon. Design your own website to give your business a professional look and learn all about Search Engine Optimization (SEO) to reach the correct audience.
7. Will you have to chase clients to be paid promptly?
Unfortunately, one of the sad aspects of freelancing can sometimes be having to chase clients to make timely payments. Self-employed people are largely not given their dues on times, and this can be a massive factor in lowering a freelancer’s motivation to work altogether. The smart move is to establish a rule of taking only advance payments so that if anything goes wrong, you are not cheated out of your hard-earned money. Draw the invoices timely and choose clients wisely. Do not make business transactions with clients who raise red flags where payments are concerned. Remember that your business is only going to do you any good with regular cheques and a steady cash flow every month.
Even if you have all these challenges covered, there is a multitude of other considerations that you need to think about before embarking on a freelancing journey. Taxes are an integral part of working as a freelancer. Every year come January; the annual self-assessment can be a cause of plenty of stress for no reason. In order to implement the tax laws and the tax accounts correctly, you might find it handy to try external services to keep your business finances sorted. Get in touch with us for an unparalleled accounting services to keep the tax worries at bay this season!