Published on Apr-24-2016
The question is often asked, why I should become a freelancer when I can get a job instead. My answer to that is freedom. I don’t consider myself a world traveler; however I would like the ability to go somewhere when I decide to leave and go someplace. This unfortunately is something near impossible to do with most jobs. Most places of employment require you to be at a certain location for so many hours in the day and trade your time for money. It doesn’t matter if you can get the task accomplished at home or on the road, your work contract states you must be at your designated work location and work there in exchange for your time for some money. Being a freelancer will enable me to continue working with the added bonus of working wherever I choose to work from. Whether that is the beaches of Brazil, my home office in Kansas City, an apartment in New York City, or visiting family in Buffalo. As long as I get the work done, I should be able to choose where I am working from. Another great benefit to becoming a freelancer is you are the master of your destiny. Instead of waiting around at a job to be fired or laid off, I control my own employment destiny by my own marketing efforts. This line of thinking also follows the ability to earn more money. The amount of money I can earn as a freelancer is also dependent on my marketing abilities and can expand or retract quickly. Unlike a traditional job where it is quite difficult to get a sizeable raise if possible to get any financial increase at all. Did I forget to mention reduced taxes because of greater tax deductions available to those self employed. Lastly as a freelancer I can more freely protest ObamaCare, as the unconstitutional tax that it is, and choose to spend my money on Kansas licensed Naturopathic Doctors instead.
To get started I needed a website. Maybe I’m bias being a web developer, but every freelancer in my humble opinion needs their own website letting the world know something about who they are. Even if it’s just a simple resume or CV; every freelancer needs a piece of the world wide web that they can call their own. With all of the different tld (top level domains) available today anybody should be able to find a url (uniform resource locator) that meets their needs. I used the tld .me, and then added my name to it and viola; I have the perfect web address. As you can see from my website I don’t have much in the way of education, experience, or projects; however I got started. Everybody has to start from somewhere; the name of this freelancer game is to get started and to keep moving forward. My website is live, I’m a freelancer; hello world I’m open for business.
I am not a social media person, however I am willing to try it and see if it’s helpful to me in my freelancing career. LinkedIn makes the most sense to me, because it is used for business purposes only. From my understanding I just need to keep my profile up to date and network with others that will be helpful to me in my freelancing career. I also chose Twitter, because many respected web developers front end and back end use Twitter. I am hoping to stay up to date on the latest trends and innovations in the web development world by using Twitter. I’m not sure how it will help me with networking, but I’m willing to try and see what happens. One thing I know for sure is if I don’t at least try it’s guaranteed not to work. Now you can call me a social media groupie just like the rest of the net citizens.
There is strength in numbers. Don’t walk alone if you don’t have too. I am new to freelancing, but that doesn’t mean I have to travel my journey alone. I immediately signed up for membership at the Freelancers Union. This way I don’t have to reinvent the wheel, many questions which I have yet to think of; I’m sure will be answered by being a member of this large and respected association. Being a member of an association like this is also a great way to network. Another association I joined was BlackFreelance. Being a Black techie has its own unique challenges. Keeping with my mantra of why walk alone when you don’t have to, is the reason I joined this fine and innovative association. Did I forget to mention more networking opportunities? Just like any other professional. Belonging to a professional organization is just good business, and I’m all about good business.
“I stopped thinking the way other people think a long time ago. You gotta think like you think.”
What do I do to increase my number of projects? After all potential clients want to see previous work done, to gauge my capabilities. Problem is when new, you just don’t have much to show when it comes to past projects. Luckily I have a solution to my dilemma. There are several volunteer organizations like Catchafire or Skills for Change, which connect volunteers with skills with the people that need them. This will be a great way for me to get valuable experience, increase my network, and boost my sparse looking portfolio. In addition to all of the above pro bono work is good for the soul. I’ll find a project I care about and it’ll spread good karma around the world.
My name is Clark A, this is my first blog post, and this is my big “Hello” to the world wide web. I am a front end web developer with knowledge of PHP. If you have a project, including volunteer projects, contact me using the form on my website and let’s get started. If you want to just say hello, I’d love to hear from you. Don’t forget to network with me on Twitter or LinkedIn. Signing off for now; this is the beginning of my great freelancing journey. Until next time…