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Flying solo: How to make it as a freelancer

Text: Nicola Davidson; Photography: People Images

March 21, 2017

freelance career adviceIf you’ve been stuck in the daily grind for what feels like long enough, going freelance could be the answer. But how do you make the change from permanent to self-employed a smooth, stress-free one? Take a look and find out how to make your decision to go it alone as successful as possible.

1 Get in contact

Before you make the choice to turn your spare room into an office, start by contacting everyone you know in your chosen field – friends, former colleagues and the like. If you can start working on freelance jobs in your spare time while you’re still permanently employed, you’ll have a solid client base already in place before you even hand in your resignation letter.

2 Save, save and save some more

If you’re considering making the move to freelance, make sure your bank account is in a favourable position first. Having three to six months’ salary saved beforehand will give you the cushion you need while exploring freelance opportunities, and give you valuable peace of mind as well.

3 Start self-marketing

The web is the first place people turn to when searching for service providers – that and word of mouth. Use one of the many free tools available to put your website in place, register with all the freelance sites you can, open social media accounts for your venture, and invest in business cards for networking.

4 Learn how to wear a lot of hats

Keep in mind that when you’re working for yourself, you’re going to have to be your own HR rep, marketing guru, accountant, IT whizz and more – so if you don’t already have these skills in place, you’ll need to start developing them.

5 Be prepared to work

Believe it or not, freelancing isn’t about waking up at 10 and lying around all day eating chocolate and watching TV. It’s about hard graft, sometimes seven days a week. Be prepared for the grind, be prepared for clients to contact you after hours, and then when you do find some time, by all means throw on your sweats and eat your way through a family-sized bar of Dairy Milk. A girl’s gotta have some fun!

Ready to get started? Before you do, read these DOs and DON’Ts of working from home!

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