Freelancing isn’t for everyone. It takes a certain skill set and traits to be able to handle working on your own for multiple clients. It’s not an easy task, but some prefer it because of the flexibility and constant changing of projects and tasks. If you’re thinking about freelancing but are unsure if it’s the best career change for you, check out this list of 6 traits that successful freelancers have!
When you’re freelancing, you’re your own boss. You’re making your own rules, schedule, etc.. Sometimes people need someone to delegate and doing that on your own can pose as a challenge. Freelancers have to plan their workflow prior to starting projects to ensure they meet project deadlines. In the end, you’re the one accountable for the clients’ work. If something goes wrong or the deadline is missed, you’re the only one there. This trait/skill certainly takes a lot of practice and goes hand in hand with some of the other traits mentioned below.
Curiosity and creativity go hand in hand. If you’re curious, intrigued, and passionate about a client’s idea, the more you will enjoy your freelancing opportunities. The beauty of freelancing is the ability to choose what you want to work on! The more curious you are, the more people you will meet and the more you’ll see your projects improve.
Self-confidence is extremely important for a freelancer to have. Once you start pitching to clients more, you’ll develop this over time. Don’t let a denial set you back, though! Always take them as an opportunity to work on something else you’ll enjoy! Their loss! The only way to develop confidence is doing more, trying new things, and making mistakes. The more confidence you show, the more clients will trust you and see the passion you have for their ideas.
Ability to Sell Yourself
Similar to self-confidence, the ability to sell yourself is extremely important. You can’t sell yourself without self-confidence! As a freelancer, you are providing a service to a client that will fit their needs. You need to show them that your implementation ideas are the best of the best and perfectly fit for them. If you aren’t selling your ideas, they’ll likely go to another freelancer or company to get the job done. Show them that you have the skillset and passion to get it done!
As someone working on their own for multiple clients, it’s extremely important to stay organized. As it is always, but even more so. Keep files on your desktop and backup printed copies of projects you’re working on for each client to stay organized. Keep multiple calendars with deadlines and important information to ensure you aren’t missing anything! The more organized you are, the more in control you will feel. Make your workspace inspiring and clean.
When you’re selling yourself, you’re going to need great communication skills! Freelancers are typically very independent workers who like working wherever they can remotely or at home. Why should you need people skills if you’re working solo? Well, you’re constantly pitching to clients and putting yourself out there. This is when communication is super important! You’ll need to communicate effectively to ensure the clients understand the projects you are creating for them. It’s also important to speak up and ask questions so there is clarity on both sides of the equation.
Previous work experience is very helpful when deciding if freelancing is the right path for you. You know your likes and dislikes and what work environment works for you. You also have probably gained most of these skills and traits along the way! The more practice you get, the more successful you’ll be.