Here at Sagegroupy, we think freelancing is fantastic. Freelancers have freedom and control over their work, which can’t be found in the traditional workforce. However, before you jump into freelancing full time there are a few things to consider. Building a successful business takes time and it might be hard to be patient when you are passionate about your freelance work and eager to spend more time on it. Here are a few things that you should have in place before you become a full time freelancer.
A Desire for Change
One big reason people turn to freelancing is that they lack satisfaction at their job. If your 9-5 is adversely affecting your mental health or if you feel like you’re stagnating, it might me time to consider freelancing. When you ready to turn your passion or your side-projects into a business and find that your current job is getting in the way of that, then it is time to make the transition. Or perhaps what started as a side-gig has turned into a lucrative business and you need to devote more time to it.
Before you quit your day job it is important that you already have a few steady clients and a variety of projects on the go, perhaps a couple high paying and a few lower paying gigs. You also need to know how to get clients so that you can keep working when those projects finish. Have a great portfolio ready to show off and a solid professional network to help introduce you to new clients.
A Great Work Ethic
Freelancing offers freedom, but you might have to work more than 40 hours a week. Expect to do a lot of unpaid work, hustling and networking at times in order to land new clients. Building a business takes a lot of dedication and the ability to work on networking and self-promotion. You also need to know how to manage workflow, when to say no to gigs or when to raise your rates. Keeping track of all your projects’ schedules, deadlines, invoices, etc.takes good organizational skills. Plus you’ll need the ability to advocate for yourself to get the rates you deserve and get your invoices paid on time.
You should have a monetary cushion available before you leave your job to freelance full time. Aim to have several months to a year's worth of living expenses available. There is less financial security in freelancing, clients might come and go and you’ll have no benefits, so plan accordingly. Besides a monthly budget for living expenses, you need a yearly financial plan to take into account taxes, healthcare, unexpected expenses etc. It doesn’t hurt to have a back-up financial plan in case you have a long dry spell.
A Love of Learning
Besides studying your craft in order to build you profolion and thrive in your niche, you are going to need to research business skills such as contracting, marketing, taxes etc. Prepare to learn a lot about running your own business if you are going to be a successful solopreneur.
Transitioning from the traditional workforce into full time freelancing might take time and many baby-steps before you feel that you have enough savings, a comfortable client base and a foundation of business skills. Be patient on the road to full time freelancing and you will be able to turn your side-hustle into a thriving business. Don’t forget to keep your profile up to date and looking great on Sagegroupy so that new clients can find you.