Relying on the skillset of a lone individual is a common reason freelancers fail. Most likely, you don’t have all the traits needed to successfully run a business in and of yourself. How do you get the rest?
Create a Tribal wolf pack
You need a team to achieve more than you can alone. And not just any team.
More than just a collection of friends and family, a freelancer’s wolf pack must include highly skilled teammates whose contributions to the business are clearly defined and well understood by the group as a whole.
The good news is that not everyone in the world is just like you. Other people you know have strengths that can complement your own and give your business everything it needs. It’s your job to find those people and ask them to join you.
While your business starts with you, it shouldn’t end with you.
Specific Operational Skillsets
Most businesses will need people with skills in technology, business strategy, operations, marketing, accounting and finance, legal and human resources.
Depending on your business, other skillsets may be warranted, such as public relations, research and development, graphic design, user experience, or engineering. Stick to your strengths. And just because you can do something yourself doesn’t mean you should. For example, find a good bookkeeper and a talented website designer if your time is better spent wooing potential clients.
Keep in mind that these thinkers may be part- or full-time employees, independent contractors or other outside resources, such as your DeltaPrimed cohort.
Different Thinking Capabilities
Surround yourself with intelligent, savvy, honest people. The key is finding people who think differently—not just clones to agree with your every opinion. These members of your wolf pack will prove beneficial as sounding boards, devil’s advocates and geniuses to benefit your fledgling enterprise.
- Strategic and long-term thinkers. You’re passionate about your business, yet knee-deep in working in your business. These thinkers help you prepare for one, three, or five years down the road. Heck! They’ll help you prepare for one, three, or five months down the road.
- Detail-oriented thinkers. Every detail matters to these individuals, and they are
What I want my business to look like requires an investment of time and money. Just like my yard.
Is the inspiration a realistic goal?
Thankfully, I have a cohort of supporters who encourage my success, confront my bs, and hold me accountable. Through their insightful questions I’ll discover the reality of my dreams.
Interested in finding your tribe?
Leave a note in the comments or contact us.
We have all experienced attempting to get a task down and not allocating enough time. It isn’t so much about time management perhaps, as energy or attention management and also being able to prioritize what is really important. How important are all of the 50 things on your to do list?
We start to think of our weekends (and evenings) as time to work on the tasks that require solo concentration. Work begins to invade our downtime.
Monday morning arrives and the cycle continues.
How can you stop it?
Schedule power hours with yourself.
Block out time on your calendar from 60-120 minutes and take on a particular project that requires high concentration like writing proposals or reports, or creative thinking and planning.
Scheduling regular power hours in your calendar in advance each week will keep you from overworking on weekends and evenings. You’ll avoid burnout too.
Try to schedule a power hour every day if you can. If scheduling one power per day each week feels impossible, start with just one per week and increase gradually.
Establishing this as a regular work habit will keep you productive, less stressed, and feeling like you are accomplishing something.
What are your tips?
The life of a freelancer is perfect, right? You are free to do whatever you want, when you want. You call the shots, make the rules, and work on your own terms. Unfortunately for many freelancers, there sometimes comes a time when your freelance life just doesn’t feel like it’s even working anymore.
Maybe you have taken on too many clients or you’re overbooked. Maybe your current clients are too demanding of your time. Maybe you didn’t schedule properly and you feel like you’re working all the time but getting very little done.
Maybe you have let something get you down — so you aren’t working as you were before. Maybe you are procrastinating.
If this sounds like what is happening to you, then you might be missing the “free” in freelance.
Here are some things you can do to get it back:
Set a schedule: The first step is to set a schedule and if you already have one, you just need to reevaluate it and possibly create a new one. Adjust your schedule to separate work time and “me time” so you still get a chance each day to relax and unwind. You cannot work 24/7 or you will just burnout anyway.
Control your emails: A trick I use to control my emails is by only checking and answering them once per hour. Some people only check emails at certain times, such as twice a day — at 10 a.m. and 3 p.m.
If you have not made an actual schedule for email reading and answering, it seems like they are constantly streaming in and this process can be a real distraction.
Reading, answering and sorting emails as a busy freelancer can seem like a full time job itself.
Get picky with your projects: You freelance so you can have the freedom to choose the jobs you want and the clients you want to work with, and those that you don’t. You may need to get picky with your projects — really, you may need to. Don’t feel obligated to take anything and everything that comes along. If you detest a project for any reason, including getting it from someone you don’t want to work with — the likelihood you may fail can happen, but at the very least, you will not enjoy it.
Plan your work day: In addition to setting a schedule, you need to plan each work day according to what you need to have done for each client. You must plan exactly how much time you have to work each day, and what you must accomplish in that time that is set aside.
Planning your work day will help you stay on track, complete tasks and meet goals on time. This frees you up to still have time for other things in your life.
Save all you can: When you are smarter about your spending, you will have a better budget to work with. Save as much money as you can so that you are not desperate to take any and every job that comes along. This habit will help you have the financial confidence to pass on those projects that you really don’t like the sound of, without worrying about losing your house.
Budget your finances: This goes hand in hand with savings. Budget your finances so you are saving a chunk of cash for the lean months when you don’t have enough projects. Also, with a budget you will know what you are spending and when.
Making and keep budgetary controls on oneself will help you know how much money you have to bring in and how much room you have for relaxation time. There will be no surprises to pop up on you and as a freelancer; with a budget you will be able to completely control your income potential.
With these tips, you can learn how to really enjoy your freelance life, which is the whole point of freelancing in the first place.
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