I’m not a guru when it comes to freelancing. I have been in this field for about 4 years now. But, I have learned a handful of lessons that’s been helping me realize my dream of a successful freelance career. I won't say that I know all the answers on how to be a successful freelancer. But I can give you bits and pieces of what I've gleaned for those years that i've been working and living a freelancer's lifestyle.
I must say that working at home as a freelancer is like a balancing act between success and failure. It’s like walking on a thin wire that a bad move can mean disaster. But it doesn’t mean that it’s not possible to succeed.
Is there any secret mantra to success?I don’t think so. The road to success have long been carved. It’s in the books written and published, it's in our parents words of wisdom, it’s everywhere on the internet. But it’s only found by those who seek it. It’s only realized by those who wills and purposes to achieve it. People may gauge success differently. Some look at your fat bank account as a the ultimate measure. That can be one. Now here's some more…
Thrive in Competition.
Competition is very big factor why many newbies, and even long time freelancers lose faith that they can survive in an ever growing dog eat dog environment. The feeling of insufficiency, insecurity and inferiority takes them down even before they start. To succeed, recognize your lack, build on your strength and enhance them. And most important, strive to diligently move forward. William Feather once said “Success seems to be largely a matter of hanging on after others have let go.” You can never change your competitors but you can change yourself by changing your attitude towards competition.
Understand what real service is.
Working and finishing an assignment with flair is not at always a guarantee that you can get a repeat customer. But if you’ll include a good customer experience, that is, good communication and interpersonal skills, an extra mile to deliver exceptional results, honest and cheerful disposition, you’re not only earning from your current work but you are investing for future assignments too. Bottom-line, real service is about building relationship.
Know when to say no
Not all the glitter is gold. With freelancing, not all opportunities are worth taking. In order to succeed you should learn to say no even to the most promising, financially rewarding offer under certain conditions. First of all, practice saying no if you’re health will be compromised for working too long. This will not only affect your productivity but will ruin your reputation. Don’t take on too much on your plate that you no longer have time for your family. And should certainly say no if you are being offered something that’s too good to be true. That’s most probably a scam.
Build and bank on reputation
Those who want to thrive in their freelancing career should know that a reputable name is worth more than the earnings. So start building your reputation. Every project is an opportunity to build your name and earn the respect of your employer. Every feedback you’ll receive is a gauge of your effort to succeed.
Set Your goals
Goals and purposes provide direction. If you want to succeed, start visualizing it. Write them down and place it on a visible location where you can always be reminded. Benjamin Disraeli said, “The secret of success is constancy of purpose.” Take every occasion as a means to actualize your goals and purposes.
It's your time to speak up, what have you been doing to realize your goal of being a successful freelancer?