Should You Work as a Freelancer at the Start of Your Career?
At the start of your career, things aren’t always perfect. After all, that great internship in Shanghai looks fantastic on a resume but it doesn’t always start out paying the rent. As such, you might look for another job you can do in the meantime.
However, some consider that freelancing could also potentially be a part of the beginning of their career, not just a side job. So, the question becomes, should you do it? After all, freelancing can take up a lot of time, so do the benefits weigh out in the end.
What Do You Do When You’re a Freelancer?
If you are just getting into freelancing, a fair question would be the same question you ask with any other job: what does a freelancer do?
Well, the answer isn’t as straightforward as some other jobs. This is because what one freelancer might specialize in could be polar opposite to what another freelancer does. For example, a freelancer could specialize in writing web content for blogs another freelancer might work as an illustrator.
The general definition that ties all freelancers together is the idea that freelancers don’t work for a company in the traditional sense. They don’t answer to a boss or company. Instead, they are self-employed and work with a variety of clients. In other words, a freelancer isn’t tied down – they follow the work that they want and need.
Do Freelancers Make Money?
Another crucial question before you go into any career is if it’ll make you any money. After all, if you are going to be investing a lot of time into a freelancing job, you should at least make money off of it. This is especially important if you are trying to turn freelancing into a career.
Well, the answer really depends on a few factors. First of all, you probably won’t make a lot of money out of the gate. It takes time to build up a base of clients that you can rely on for work.
In addition, it depends on how marketable you are. Much like any other field, you will be paid more if you have more experience or are better at your job than your competition. Of course, this means that you also have to market your skills to find clients to work for.
Why Should You Be a Freelancer?
So, let’s look at the pros and cons. First, why should you be a freelancer?
There are many reasons why one would choose to freelance at the beginning of their career. One of the first being the freedom that freelancing can offer you. Not only aren’t you tied to a specific company, many freelancers also choose to work online. This means they have more freedom in when and where they work.
Freelancing also allows you to explore skills that you’re passionate about. In a traditional office job, you are tied to the jobs that are your responsibility. As a freelancer, you control your own responsibilities. For example, if you’re an illustrator that wants to try their hand at writing, you can give it a try with new clients. This also allows you to build your skills in new fields as well.
Another reason freelancing is a good job at the beginning of your career is that it’s easier than it once was. With the internet, finding jobs and breaking into your field as a freelancer. Many sites are now dedicated to helping connect clients and freelancers so your job isn’t full of advertising and cold calls.
Why Shouldn’t You Be a Freelancer?
However, it’s fair to notice that there are some situations in which freelancing might not be for you.
First, you should make sure that you have marketable skills. If you don’t feel comfortable or confident in what you can do, it’s much harder to market your skills and use them to a degree that impresses clients. Fortunately, if you look hard enough, you are likely to find that you have some sort of marketable skill and freelancing gives you the chance to develop that skill. To help you think of a skill, consider what you want to do in the future or what role you would hold in a traditional job setting.
You might also want to reconsider being a freelancer if you aren’t a self-starter. This isn’t to say anything negative, it’s simply a fact that some people need more direction in a workplace environment.
As a freelancer, you are your own boss. This means that it’s up to you to find and obtain jobs and to make sure they get done in a timely manner. If you can’t get yourself started and keep yourself going, you’re clients won’t stick around when they’re projects don’t get done. This is especially important from a marketing standpoint because if clients start leaving bad reviews about you and your work, new clients will be harder to get onboard.