While freelance gigs are becoming quite the norm, there still are limited resources out there on how to properly start, work, and make a living as a freelancer. Being a one-man-band ain’t easy, and it seems like every day there are new tools and resources to improve your workflow.
In search of a more “back to the basics” kind of book, our Creative Assistant Allison spent the month of May reading Creative Inc. by Meg Mateo Ilasco & Joy Deangdeelert Cho to learn the ins and outs of HOW to start a freelance biz. This book is great because each chapter goes into tonsss of detail about how to run a successful freelance business and the steps you need to take both before and during the process.
Working with clients, pricing your services, marketing yourself, and figuring out the beast that is *cough* tax season…….this real-life instruction manual will basically be every freelancer’s bible. Read on to see why Allison loved Creative Inc.!
What was the biggest takeaway from this book?
I felt like the main point the authors get across in this book is that if you want to be a creative freelancer, it’s all on YOU. No one can make your business happen but you, so you have to hold yourself accountable. While you really are the only one who can bring in the business, you shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help. Simply believe in yourself, because if you don’t, no one will!
What should you prepare for before becoming a full-time freelancer?
While I haven’t delved much into freelance work, the book really makes you consider whether the freelance lifestyle is right for you. Basically, the authors say that there are going to be lots of ups and downs. You have to be prepared for having times when you are slammed with work and times when you don’t necessarily have a steady flow of work or income. Being a freelancer is all about finding the balance between “overwhelmed” and “thumb-twiddling.” To avoid this, the authors recommend establishing a good workflow and business model before you get the ball rollin’ on your biz.
How will my home life change as a freelancer?
The beauty and the beast of being a freelancer is that you can work from home (pjs, anyone?!). Staying motivated can be SO hard when you are the only one there to hold yourself accountable. The book really emphasizes to make sure you balance your personal and professional life because working from home can really blur the line between the two. If you’re a workaholic like me, it can be easy to get wrapped up in work and never take a break. Remember to put your laptop down and allocate working hours that don’t interfere with your personal or home life. Again, balance is key!
What are your favorite quotes from the book?
“Like any successful friendship or marriage, clients require love, dedication, and trust to foster a long-term, happy relationship.”
When working with clients, “be objective and remove your emotions so that you an offer suggestions with a clear head and their best interests in mind.”
“When project demands linger in your mind, you sometimes can’t help but take them into your personal life. Before you call it a day, or a few times a week, find a mental escape that immerses you in an activity that takes your mind off things.”
“…remember that as a freelancer it’s not necessarily about building wealth, but about the process of how wealth is built.”
If you’re interested in staying up-to-date with our Book Club, join our Facebook group! We read and discuss the books in a “virtual” book club, all are welcome to join!