Freelancing has grown steadily over the years as a career option. In 2014, around 53 million professionals worked as self-employed contractors. By 2020, that number had jumped to 59 million — an 11.3% increase during the past six years. Trends show that freelancing will continue to increase in the years ahead thanks to the growing popularity of remote work.
At Work in Progress Las Vegas, we know self-employment takes time and organization to ensure productivity and growth. That’s why we’ve prepared this freelancer’s survival guide, which looks at the core benefits of being a self-employed contractor, offers freelancing tips, and explains the benefits of co-working spaces.
Whether you’re new to freelancing or have already established yourself as a self-employed contractor, here are some remote work and freelancing tips that will help guide you to a more successful career.
When you set out to work as a freelancer, you get to determine the number of clients you’ll take on. That doesn’t mean you’ll have complete control over the volume of work — a single client could demand hours of project work. Organization is key when you’re working as a freelancer, and the following freelancing tips can help get you there.
Prioritize Your Tasks
Know what you need to take care of and what needs your immediate attention. Sometimes these things are not one and the same, which is why you need to make a list of priorities. When you set out to create this list, ask yourself, “What needs to be done now and what can wait until later?” Tackling the more time-sensitive tasks and projects will help you keep you on track and make for a more organized workflow.
Carve Out a Daily Routine
One of the biggest perks of freelancing is that you can work whenever and wherever you want. This can also be one of the biggest pitfalls if you don’t know what you’re doing or when you’re doing it. Take time to carve out a daily routine so that your workday goes as planned. What days are you going to work? What time will you start and end? Will you work from home or if you live in Sin City, will you head over to a co-working space like Work in Progress in Las Vegas during the workweek?
As a freelancer, there’s nobody but you telling you what you need to do. If you procrastinate, the quality of the work you produce will suffer and that can harm your relationship with clients. You can counter procrastination by setting up an accountability system, for example, or creating daily goals that will help keep you better organized.
We’ve already established that as a freelancer, you’re your own boss — that’s what many people love about this role. Aside from getting organized, you also need to make sure you’re productive at what you do. Here are a few ways you can do that.
Take time to not work. Set apart time — a couple of 10-minute blocks every hour, for example, as well as an hourlong lunch break — to rest your eyes and mind. You can use this time to take a short walk, meditate, or just watch a bit of your favorite show. Give your brain the break it needs to work at its peak capability.
Set Small Goals
Long-term goals can seem out of reach sometimes because of the time they take to actually become fulfilled. So consider setting small goals for yourself that’ll help you remain productive, finishing tasks and projects faster. These can be daily or weekly goals that will help you feel accomplished and ready to tackle the next goal without feeling drained or rushed.
Make Meetings Worthwhile
Whether it’s as a freelancer or a remote worker, you’ll no doubt be in a meeting with a client or colleague at some point. Make it a point to steer these meetings to be specific to the task at hand. Avoid filler and ask the hard-hitting questions that will make this time more productive and help you get back to work faster.
Aim for Growth
Most professionals want to grow in their careers, and freelancers should aim for the same goal. This involves knowing what field you want to grow in before you start freelancing in it. Here are a couple of things to consider.
Find Your Focus or Niche
What field or industry do you want to launch a career in? What are your passions and what are you good at? What would your client base look like and do you want to do work for them? These are questions every new freelancer should ask themselves before diving into the work. Finding what your focus will be is key. This will enable you to build a professional foundation as you continue to grow as a self-employed contractor.
Time: Keep Track of It
Keeping track of time means monitoring how much time you spend on a certain task or project. This helps you determine how much your time is worth and how you can be transparent with clients about the cost of your work. As you hone your skills and determine how long a project or specific task takes to complete, you’ll be able to manage your time with more ease and grow your business.
Become a Work in Progress Member
Becoming a freelancer is a serious commitment and it — along with remote work — gives people the freedom and flexibility to thrive and grow professionally without being exclusively confined to an employer’s rules and plans. While this newfound freedom is a definite attraction for new freelancers, it’s important that you have some sort of structure in place to keep you on track. That’s where Work in Progress Las Vegas comes in, giving you the literal space to work in an office-like environment where you can grow your business alongside professionals just like you.