We’re well into 2014 by now. How are you coming with your annual freelance web design business goals?
That’s what I thought. But don’t worry. It’s not just you. Most of us are behind on our goals.
One of the biggest perks of freelancing is also one of the biggest problems. To be precise, the problem is the fact that you don’t answer to a boss.
Most freelancers that I know love the fact that no one is looking over their shoulder to make sure that they get their work done. And I agree. Not having a boss can be great.
- Want a day off? Just take it.
- Having trouble getting started in the morning? No problem. Get up later.
- Don’t feel like working today? Then don’t.
- Do you dread working with that problem client today? Put it off until tomorrow.
You get the picture. There’s a lot of freedom when you’re a freelancer.
Unfortunately, sometimes that freedom means that you don’t get your work done. You may miss deadlines. You may not keep up with your accounting tasks. You might put off marketing until you have no clients coming in.
It’s easy to see how freelancing freedom can be detrimental to your web design business.
Fortunately, you can do something about it. You can choose to be accountable. In this post, I’ll explain how accountability can improve your productivity and help you to get more done. I’ll also describe what to look for in an accountability partner and list some possible accountability partners.
Should you work with a freelance design partner?
The answer is “maybe.”
Not every freelancer is cut out to be in a partnership. And not every pair of freelance designers who decide to work together succeed.
For many, working with a freelancing partner is the best thing that ever happened to them. But for others, forming a partnership results in nothing but chaos and misery.
What’s the difference?
That’s an excellent question, and one that we’ll explore in this post. We’ll look at why some partnerships work and others don’t. I’ll also provide five tips to help you form a working web design partnership.
If you liked this post, you may also like 10 Essential Guidelines for Freelance Collaboration.
You’re about to graduate. Or maybe next year will be your last year of school.
After graduation, you have your career all planned out. There’ll be no traditional 9-to-5 grind for you. Your future is in freelancing… or so you think.
I have one question for you. If you plan to become a freelance web designer after graduation, are you really ready?
You may think you are ready to begin freelancing right out of school, but chances are that you’re not.
Fortunately, there are some steps to take to prepare yourself for freelance web design even before you graduate. In fact, the earlier you start preparing yourself for freelancing, the better.
So, if you’ve still got another year of school, be glad. That gives you some extra time to get yourself ready for freelancing.
However, if you’re graduating this year, don’t panic. There are still some steps you can take to get ready for freelancing.
In this post, I list over ten ways that students can prepare themselves for a future in freelance web design before they finish school.
If you like this post, you may also like Freelancers, Use this 22-Point Checklist to Find Out How Professional You Are.
“I could never work for someone I’ve never met.”
My friend was discussing my freelancing career with me and she couldn’t imagine working for clients she’d never met in person. But freelance web designers and other freelancers do it all the time.
Many freelancers connect with their clients primarily through the Internet. Their clients might be located across town, or across the world. It’s simply not practical or cost-effective to personally visit every web design client.
Working with remote clients has some unique challenges. But it’s quite possible (and probably even necessary in today’s competitive market) to successfully include remote clients into your business strategy.
In this post, I’ll provide some key strategies for dealing with web design clients that you never meet face-to-face. You’re also invited to share any tips you have for dealing with remote clients.
If you enjoyed this post, you may also like 6 Common Freelancing Problems That Using a Contract May Solve.
Ultimately, freelance web design is all about choices. The choices you make as a freelancer will determine your business success or failure.
The best course for a freelance web designer is to proactively plan how you will approach each choice. You can always change your approach later if you feel that something is not working for your business.
The alternative of not planning means that your business will sort of drift along. You’ll deal with each new situation as you face it, but you don’t really have a plan. You’ll probably base your decision about each situation on how you feel or the latest article you read. Your business direction will seem faltering and inconsistent.
If you’re extremely lucky (and very talented) your web design business may be okay drifting. You just might make it. You’ll probably be pretty frustrated, though.
Most freelance web designers, however, need to be intentional in order to succeed. In this post, I list six crucial interrelated choices that every designer needs to make in order to run and maintain a successful freelance web design business. (The advice can apply to other types of freelancers as well.)
As a freelance designer who works hard, you probably pride yourself on the quality of your work. And with good cause. You know that your work is good.
But, doing good work and having a professional business mindset are different things. To truly succeed as a freelance design professional, you actually need both.
In this post, I’ll explain the importance of having a professional business mindset. I’ll also provide a 22-point checklist you can use as a guideline to find out whether you could improve on your professionalism.
If you liked this post, you may also like 10 Principles of Successful Freelancers.
Frequently when I hear or read of a freelance web designer having problems with a client, there is no contract in place. I don’t think that’s a coincidence.
Contracts are very important for the freelancer. If you can’t get a formal contract with a client, at least get your agreement in writing. An email recapping a telephone conversation you had can work.
Why is getting your freelancing agreement in writing so important? Simply put, a written agreement or contract can solve a lot of common freelancing problems.
Without a written agreement, the terms of your project can easily deteriorate into a debate about who said what. Trust me, you do not want that to happen. When it does, it isn’t pretty.
With a contract in place, you both have something to refer to during the course of the project. And, in a worst case scenario, you can use your written agreement to support your case in court.
In this post, I’ll identify six common problems that freelancers face and explain how having a written work agreement can help with each problem. If you liked this post, you’ll probably also like 7 Keys to a Successful Design Project.