If you’re currently in a permanent position but wish to have more flexibility and control over your work, schedule and finances then you might want to consider going freelance. The thought of giving up the security of a permanent job can be intimidating, but as long as you are fully aware of what the change will mean for you and you prepare properly for the move, you might find it’s the perfect fit for you.
Follow our top tips to help make the transition into freelance go smoothly.
Create a savings plan
Just as you’d save for retirement or a big holiday, the same type of planning applies to making the move into freelance. Because starting out as a freelancer can often be unpredictable, you’ll want to create an emergency fund just incase times get a little tough. Take into account all of your daily, weekly and monthly expenses and estimate what you would need to bring in to sustain your current lifestyle. Create a budget spreadsheet so you can have those numbers in front of you.
Try freelancing on the side
It’s a good idea to do some freelance work and build your client base while you are still working full time to make the transition a lot smoother. Unless you already have a successful freelance business, it can take some time to build up a client base and/or work consistently through an agency. Getting a head start while you are still earning a steady income will give you more peace of mind.
Update your portfolio
It can be much more difficult to attract interest if you don’t have any recent work to show, especially if you are in a creative field such as graphic design or copywriting. Start by compiling any significant accomplishments or projects you’ve worked on recently to showcase your skills and then consider how you’d like to rebuild your portfolio site. Take time to make sure it reflects a wide variety of your work to show people your full potential.
Set up informational meetings
Reach out to people in your network who have made the move into freelance. It’s a great way to ask any questions you might have and really think through if this is the right move for you. LinkedIn is the best place to start. Look up connections in your industry who have their own freelance businesses or who work regularly as freelancers and reach out to request an informational chat.
Treat working at home like an office job
While it can be amazing to be able to set your own schedule and be your own boss, it’s still important to develop a daily routine you can stick to that works for you. Don’t rely too much on the fact that you don’t have to report to anyone or be in an office between certain hours. It can be tempting to work from your bed or stay in your pyjamas all day but you won’t necessarily do your best work that way!
Become an expert networker
Networking in the professional world can provide so many benefits to your brand. If you’re not doing so already, consider attending local networking events in your area that are catered to your desired industry and talk to other like-minded professionals. Who knows, they may even become a client one day.
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