Avoiding the Pitfalls of Freelancing
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Freelancing can be a wonderful and rewarding way to make a living. And that’s whether you want to always work by yourself, or use it as a stepping stone to building a larger company. But let’s also be realistic. Truth is, only a fraction of individuals actually make a good living at it. Sooner or later, most fail and give up.
Most fail not because they lack talent or ambition. They fail because they fall into one or more of the pitfalls of freelancing—the things few of us ever consider, or that others never tell us about. So if you're thinking of freelancing, or if you're already trying to make a go of it and haven’t been as successful as you’d like, you should take this short course.
In less than an hour, this course and its supplementary materials will give you the inside scoop on freelancing for a good living. It’s about all the things no one ever shares with you. It’s about all the things that can make the difference between enjoying the fruits of working alone, or making an expensive and career-damaging mistake.
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|Section 1: Introduction|
The realities of freelancing for a living, summary of course content, and your instructor's background and experiences.
|Section 2: Freelancing's opportunities and challenges|
This lecture addresses why freelancing would be a good choice for many talented individuals: It's a growing business with many diverse opportunities. It provides the possibility of making more, and keeping more of what you make. It also offers many personal advantages, such as greater creative opportunities, and the convenience of working at home.
Attractions aside, though, most individuals fail at making freelancing a good employment choice. The reason is that they fail to fully appreciate what they'll have to adjust to, and give up. This lecture addresses the five major challenges facing anyone who wants to have a rewarding and enjoyable life working for him or herself. The supplementary material also provides a way to test yourself.
|Section 3: The importance of planning and organization|
Is part-time experience helpful? What about my location? How much insurance do I need? Can I do my own business taxes? Do I need to register? How important is making a plan? You'll find the answers to these questions in this lecture.
|Section 4: Pricing, taxation, & collection|
Half of a freelance's financial success depends on how realistically his or her work is priced. This part of the section covers the factors involved, what others charge, and what you probably need to charge.
The other half of a freelance's financial success depends on many non-pricing factors covered in this lecture. They include avoiding estimating traps, maintaining the right financial priorities, keeping an eye on your cash flow, making sure clients pay on time, and knowing how to keep more of what you make.
|Section 5: The keys to long-term success.|
Being able to make some money as a freelancer in the short-term is not difficult. But turning freelancing into a sustainable long-term business can be, to say the least, challenging. This lecture identifies eight areas that are essential to ensuring that your freelancing business will survive and prosper. In short, that you will control your own future, perhaps the most significant advantage of freelancing.
|Section 6: Conclusion|
Being successful as a freelancer over the long haul also requires keeping your business and marketing skills up to date. This lecture offers some resources.
Cameron S. Foote is founder and editor of Creative Business, the only publication devoted to the business side of design and creative services. He has over forty years of marketing communications experience in both creative and management at the agency and corporate levels. Cam has conducted business development seminars for creative firm principals and freelancers hundreds of times in cities across North AmerIca. He is the author of the creative industry's three best-selling business books: "The Business Side of Creativity," "The Creative Business Guide to Running a Graphic Design Business," and the "The Creative Business Guide to Marketing."