It's Friday afternoon and you're already sick at the thought of Monday morning. This is a sign that it's time to go and sooner you realize this, the sooner you can rebound into where you want to be professionally. However, in order to be your own boss, you have to think like one Just like a good boss won't fire an employee at random, anyone looking to be in charge should have a protocol in place.
Successful freelancing entails means planning your next move ahead of time, even if your goal is to run the most awesome hot dog cart in your area. However, don't think because you were smart enough to buy vegan hot links by the case and have a formal biz plan in place that it's time to tell the person who signs your checks where to go. Even if you and your cart are a hit at the weekend farmer's market, it may not be time.
The art of freelancing, whether it be by choice or necessity, should always start with a clean slate. It's a lot easier to make decisions when there's money (at least mid-four figures) saved. If you quit your job so you can start a cat-sitting business, even though most of your neighbors are dog owners, then you probably deserved to be on the chopping block at work.
Logic can become lost when we hate our job. Sometimes supervisors can get things twisted when they wanted someone out last year. While this type of frustration can benefit mistreated or overworked employees in the end (no company wants a lawsuit), timing is everything.
- Don't wait for the right time to make a change, create it. Look at how you manage time at home or check out things you can do on weekends that will place you closer to your goal. This may result in a nice balance of time but being proactive can also put a person in contact with others who may be able to help out.
- Make a timeline. Just like your boss gives you a specific time to get it together or handle whatever imaginary thing that bothers them, most people realize they have until their next review to move ahead or on. This is also the time to start saving if you aren't doing so already.
- Don't burn bridges. It's common to have a great business idea and maybe earn a few dollars on the side. However, life happens and keeping in touch with good people on your last job can go a long way. They may know of prospective clients or have the inside to temporary jobs that'll help out during slow freelancing periods.
- Keep a cool head. Yep, this is funny to some because time management can be the most challenging for anyone that goes from an employee to a freelancer. Everything from business etiquette to updating contact information can place someone in a surprising position once in a while. The thing is wondering if a small oops may cost a freelancer in the long run because they were trying to do seven other things at once.
There are many freelancing resources that can help out anyone getting started for the first time. A good number of these are free but it also helps to build a social media presence in addition to live contacts. Just like a boss is glad to wash incompatible employees out of their hair, moving on mentally is just as important as leaving the building for the last time.