Just a week ago, I announced my introduction to the world of self employment and full-time freelance world.
With any new decision leading you into unknown territory, I wanted some solid advice. I want to do this right and I want to pull on other’s experiences as much as I possibly can. In a single income home with a wife and two tots depending on me, it’s important to make smart decisions.
Being the Twitter tool, that I am, I figured I’d poll the masses to see what sort of advice they had. I found much of the advice people had to be very helpful, so I figured you might too.
Advice on Self Employment:
Believe God! Adam Souders
Don’t give up, be versatile, & understand you’re going to work harder at the beginning than you ever have. But it’s SO worth it! Kenny Adams
Work hard, play harder. Kenroy George
Stay organized. It is easy to start out organized, the hard part is staying that way. emoxie
don’t be afraid to charge what you deserve. Don’t think you won’t earn it – you will. Harlan Lewis
Don’t set your rate too low. :)Josh Bryant
Always schedule time in every week to market yourself. The second you stop is also the stop of income. Darren Emory
Be like Dory (Finding Nemo): Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming. Collin Robinson
Get a routine in the hours you work, file storage, the way you do backup, project management and todo-lists. Ole Martin
Treat it like a job. Set hours whether it’s 9 -5 or Midnight – 8 w/ breaks & everything & get ur own workspace w/o distractions Samuel Mateo, Jr.
Try to be consistent with your lunch break and make sure you take your time especially if your’re working from home Jamie Bicknell
Always get up, shower, get dressed, just like you would at a “normal job.” Also, beware taxes – prepare early! Dave Simon
Make a sharp distinction between your “office” and your “home”, if they are the same place. Laurent Bauman
Exercise. And if working from home, a mutual understanding of expectations with the rest of your family. Chris Bowler
Trust your gut- don’t take projects you have a bad feeling about. Stay disciplined about your work schedule. Get outta the house. Jason Reed
Routine and Records. Aaron Mahnke
Always use a contract for everything that you do. John Phillips
Remember to have a quitting time, and make sure you close the door. Vacation. Important for friends and family, very hard to do. Audrey Sargent
Always get 50% up front. Don’t low-ball your rates. Keep overhead low (only buy what you NEED). Always use a contract. Chuck Mallott
Use Billings. Joseph McLaughlin
Log every minute you work, whether for a client or not. Greg Newman
Watch the savings account. Keep that puppy padded. You will never know what may come. Joshua Brewer
1) Make customer service a priority. It’s amazing what a good name can do for your business. 2) Drink lots of water Gedy Rivera
Keep focused and work on a schedule. Fight the distractions. Tom Jenkins
A decent coffee machine and a proper pair of slippers. Tom Law
Be reasonable to your customers and fair to yourself. Oh and just because you’re customers don’t see you still have to change your underwear regularly.Ed DeCoste
It is not about the money…it is about your reputation. Always! Always, do the right thing! James Larson
Remember not to just be Techie. You are at least 3 people now – Marketing, Scheduling, Financials – Receivables. Take a few minutes each day to wear just one of these hats and do it justice. And always remember your commitment to your family. Balance and keep your integrity. The rest will follow, hopefully within your timeframe. Rick Watts
Give yourself a raise! Chris Larson
Go to work @ work time. But be home @ home time. Guard your schedule! Cory Cummings
Have a plan in place to get new clients. Even if you are getting them initially hand over fist…don’t neglect new biz efforts. Suzanne Elfstrom
Don’t have a business partner – Unless you are both willing to work the business equally, using your individual talents. Elizabeth Wilson
Write things down.Thad Haines
Don’t accept every client that comes knocking. Josh King
File all proper paperwork with state and local government. Partial payments up front. Close eyes on monies owed to you. Keep EVERYTHING for tax returns. Christine Kringle
To everyone involved in my employment, thank you for this advice.