7 tips on how to be blissfully self-employed
Learn how to manage your career while working independently.
Learn how to manage your career while working independently.
This isn’t the first time you’ve heard about self-employment, for sure. But perhaps you’ve never heard it as much as now, right?
This phenomenon has been happening more frequently nowadays: self-employment is a rising trend.
In addition to economic and social issues that may have influenced this trend, people choose to be self-employed because it enables them to set their own schedule and determine their place of work, without the usual pressures that come along with corporate environments.
But, although it may seem like an excellent option, at first, being self-employed has its pros and cons, just like any other working relationship.
One of the benefits is that you can carry out your activities from your own home or any other place you choose and still have time for your personal tasks.
On the other hand, financial instability is the main disadvantage, though many people celebrate the financial independence that being self-employed can render.
Still, it is necessary to be organized in order to have a solid career while working independently.
In this article, we’ll show you 7 must-read tips so you can be successfully self-employed.
Self-employment is nothing more than working independently and being your own boss, without exclusivity to a single client or company.
This professional doesn’t have any employment relationship and assumes the risks that this type of career requires.
Self-employed workers have the flexibility to negotiate their salary and workplace.
And how can you be successful in this working relationship?
Waking up early, being stuck on commuter traffic or an overcrowded bus, clocking in…all these things are rare, if not nonexistent, in the life of an independent worker.
Setting your own schedule is one of the most celebrated things in this work model, but it can also be a pitfall.
You need to know how to set aside time for your professional tasks as if you worked in a company.
You can’t slack off just because you won’t have a supervisor watching you all day.
Choose your hours and stick to them with discipline.
Don’t procrastinate so you don’t run the risk of not delivering work to a client or even making you lose your leisure time.
Even if you make your routine more flexible, work every day so that tasks don’t pile up, even if it’s for less time than usual.
And put off work for the next day. Procrastination is perhaps the worst enemy for those who work independently. And believe me, it’ll always be around. That’s why you need discipline!
Perhaps you don’t like the corporate environment, such as an office. But having your own place to work is key.
Even in the comfort of your home, think of a room or part of a room, to turn it into your office.
Choose a place so that those who live with you know that when you’re there, you’re working, and they can’t disturb or distract you.
Make sure that this environment is organized and that it allows you to perform certain tasks remotely, with good internet coverage, for example.
Leave your work materials nearby and avoid other devices that might distract you, such as a TV. Treat it as if it were a real office.
This helps you maintain a professional attitude in your home, which helps in your performance.
Regardless of the area in which you work, you need to advertise it, so a self-employed person is no different. And there are numerous ways to do so.
One trend nowadays is digital marketing.
Create profiles on social media, for example. Advertise your work there with creative strategies so that the public can become interested in your content.
Even if the digital world isn’t your area, always think of the possibility of maintaining at least a page on Facebook to advertise your work.
But don’t forget the good old word of mouth. Network, talk to your neighbors about what you do, create business cards and always have a few in your pocket.
This is one of the most important tips we can give you. Because it is certainly at this moment that a lot of people have doubts, and if they aren’t solved, they can really hinder your self-employment career.
The price of your services may or may not be enough to support you, or it may be far from the market’s standards, and your customers might be scared off because of high prices.
So, how do you create a balance in a way that what you charge is fair for both you and customers?
There are a few ways to counterbalance this equation. The first is to carry out a market research.
Study your possible competitors or other professionals who work in the same segment. Create a price list for each service that they might offer to serve as a basis when it comes to pricing your own work.
You should maintain a price range within what you consider fair according to your work, without straying too far from the prices you’ve researched.
If you make an investment or have to purchase materials to deliver a product to your customers, make sure you calculate this amount, even if it strays a little from what the market offers – but always being mindful of avoiding excesses!
Pay close attention to this!
As we’ve already mentioned, one of the biggest disadvantages of working independently is financial instability.
So, be careful when planning and knowing what costs to cut when necessary.
Have a detailed plan of all of your expenses and all your income.
If things are going well with a lot of work coming in, you’ll be able to enjoy financial security in the future or even go through those periods when there isn’t much work without jeopardizing your usual live standards.
Keep in mind that your income will be different each month, for better or for worse.
Another important detail is knowing what rights and obligations a self-employed person has to be aware of in their own country.
Therefore, make sure to research the law and tax obligations properly before planning your career.
Knowing the laws can shield you against certain problems that you may have with customers or even suppliers.
You can also start your own business –, which also provides you with certain privileges, from which, as an individual taxpayer, you wouldn’t have access to.
Working from home has many advantages, as we’ve told you before, doing things your way, setting your schedule, working from wherever you want and without a boss pressuring you.
But there’s no use in doing all of this if you don’t work with something that you truly enjoy.
Therefore, do something that gives you pleasure, that motivates you to get up in the morning, make your own breakfast and get to work.
If you don’t know what to do yet, but wish to work independently, think about your hobbies or in something that you know how to do well.
Research about various subjects, read about success stories and make a living out of your passions.