And one thing I like about freelancing is that it will give you the opportunity to become your own boss and determine how your own business is going to fare under any circumstances.
Moreover, becoming a freelancer does not require huge capital because you can create your workspace anywhere in your home and get started right away.
Like I always love to say, with a smartphone or laptop that has an internet connection you can get your freelancing career started right away. But before you do so, you need to be conversant with the advantages and disadvantages of freelancing.
This is because it will help you to have a foreknowledge of the things you should consider as well as avoid while climbing the ladder of freelancing.
So permit me to use the experiences I have had in my years of working as a freelancer to help you understand the advantages and disadvantages of freelancing.
But before we do so, let me briefly show you what you need to know about freelancing.
What you need to know about freelancing.
Freelancing is simply a kind of self-employment job where a client contracts a professional to deliver a service on an agreed sum. As a freelancer, you are free to provide services in multiple jobs so long as you are an expert or professional in them.
For example, I work as a freelancer in several fields which includes photography, videography, freelance writing, web design, graphics design, social media manager, digital marketer, etc. In fact, there is no limit to the number of jobs you can take on as a freelancer.
Most of freelancing jobs can be done remotely, which means that there are times you will negotiate, execute and deliver projects or tasks without getting to see the client one-on-one. This kind of freelancing is known as remote freelance.
Who can become a freelancer?
Anyone with a profession or who is an expert in any field of life’s endeavor that requires service delivery can become a freelancer.
You always have to keep in mind that you are always going to be hired to deliver your service on a contract basis and for that reason work towards ensuring you are able to deliver your work at the specified time and to the satisfaction of your client.
Advantages of freelancing.
The advantages of freelancing are:
- Skill improvement.
- Controlling your earnings.
- Opportunity to explore.
As a freelancer, you are your own boss and as such are in the position to make any decisions concerning your freelancing business.
For example, you will always have the opportunity to review and access every potential job to see if it will be convenient for you to execute and deliver them.
Of course, you have every right to turn down any job that is not paying well or has too many conditions attached to it.
Freelancing will always give the opportunity to decide when, where, and how to execute and deliver projects or tasks.
For example, if you have kids who disturb you while you’re working, you might just schedule your work when they are off to school or have gone to bed for the night.
Before taking on any freelance project, you will be opportune to know what the clients expect, the job pricing as well as the duration needed to complete it. This then will help you to make an informed decision on whether to embark on the project or not.
Having no boss to order you around or a supervisor to kick against your method of working will help you to regulate your thoughts, emotions, and behaviors in a way that will help you deliver any project even beyond your client’s expectations.
To this end, you will be the one to choose your workspace and workload, schedule every task, and decide how to run your freelancing business with nobody’s influence.
Your goal as a freelancer should be to keep your clients satisfied at all times, and you may realize that this will oftentimes make you put more effort into executing your projects. However, all this is going to fall under your own express authority.
Personally, if I have too much work hanging on my neck, what am going to do is freeze other things that are less important so as to help me focus on the job am trying to deliver on the ground.
4. Skill improvement.
Taking on several freelance jobs will help you to learn something new and in so doing stay updated and improve on your freelancing skills.
As you continue to tackle a wider variety of projects and tasks, you will find yourself growing in a particular skill set that applies no to that job.
Also, there are works that will seem challenging to the point that you will have no option but to take on any form of learning or training that will help you improve the skill that will enable you to deliver that project appropriately.
5. Controlling your earnings.
Do you realize that the bigger share of profit in every corporation always belongs to the boss even though his employees are the ones executing and completing all the company’s tasks or projects?
But as a freelancer, you will be in control of every penny that comes from the jobs you’ve successfully delivered. After deducting the expenses made to complete the project, you are going to be the one keeping all the profits.
Another thing is that as you deliver more work and establish a reputation in your chosen field, you will be able to raise your pricing and your clients will have no option but to adjust knowing that you are a sure banker when it comes to delivery.
6. Opportunity to explore.
Being a freelancer will give you the opportunity to explore other fields of endeavor.
The majority of freelancers like myself have several freelancing services they are offering to clients.
For example, I offer web design, graphic design, videography, photography, social media management, and digital marketing services to my clients.
This means that a job is undoubtedly going to come from any of these jobs every passing day or time.
Disadvantages of freelancing.
The disadvantages of freelancing are:
- Unstable and inconsistent workload.
- Working overtime.
- Irregular flow of income.
- Risk in payments.
- Lack of benefits.
- Marketing responsibility.
1. Unstable and inconsistent workload.
One of the disadvantages of freelancing is that many times there will be no project coming through. And if you’re not careful this might lead to laziness or boredom and worst still the urge to quit freelancing because you think it’s not paying as it should.
This happens most when you are just starting out as a freelancer, but once you are well-established and have many clients you won’t have to worry about this anymore.
2. Working overtime.
At other times, too many projects will cause you to work overtime in a bid to meet up deadlines.
Some clients will make it even worse by constantly reminding you of the consequences of you’re not being able to meet up with the deadline.
When this occurs, you can delegate the job to other freelancers and give a percentage of the income, especially the upcoming ones who are eager to take on a project even for free.
3. Irregular flow of income.
Freelancing does not guarantee steady workflow and as a result of that there are times your finances be going down because there are no jobs coming forth.
However, this often happens more if you are just starting out as a freelancer and for that reason you don’t have to be alarmed because once you are able to establish yourself well and accomplish more jobs you will have a steady flow of income from your freelancing business.
4. Risk in payments.
Lots of freelancing clients are selfish and greedy to the point that even after you complete their projects they will still look for one thing or the other to point out as a mistake so as to skip or forfeit paying the agreed balance.
Some of them might not have the money ready yet but instead of coming out plain, they will try to cut corners so as to delay the payments.
And the only way I always get over this is to ensure the part payment made is always enough to cover the project and still remain enough profit for me.
5. Lack of benefits.
As your own boss, therefore, you can go on vacations or buy yourself something worthwhile, especially after completing a project that was well-paid.
Unlike office workers who get leave grants, allowances, promotions, etc, there are no benefits attached o freelancing unless you decide to create one for yourself.
6. Marketing responsibility.
Most times, especially when you are starting out, you will spend so much advertising your freelance business to get jobs.