Working as a full-time freelancer or independent contractor can be a mixed bag of ups and downs. For example, you’re able to be your own boss and work your own hours, but you’re always looking for more work.
With this in mind, finding work is the most critical aspect of life as an Independent Contractor.
Freelancers and Independent Contractors have no choice but to take the initiative.
Let’s take a look at 6 ways freelancers and independent contractors can secure a steady source of income going forward:
1. Obtain Leads
Lead generation services exist for a good reason: they work. For example, many construction contractors swear by Networx leads to finding job opportunities.
Similar services exist for writers, graphic designers, and other professionals who commonly work as freelancers.
2. Join Networks
Dozens of online networks exist to help freelancers and contractors find work. Find the ones most relevant to your industry and create profiles for each network.
Stay active by posting useful bits of advice, information about discounts and deals, and similar content.
3. Invest in Marketing
It could be as simple and straightforward as building a professional website. In other words, marketing doesn’t have to include massive investments in online advertising. Contractors and freelancers can do most of the marketing legwork themselves.
While a marketing agency’s skills and insights are not without their merits, wait to bring them in until after you’ve established yourself as a moderately successful independent contractor.
4. Be Flexible
Assignments and job opportunities will rarely align within a predictable schedule. They come in bunches one week, are hard to find the next, and include an ever-changing set of conditions, parameters, and pay rates. Those who struggle to manage that level of variety in their professional lives may want to think twice about life as freelancers. However, those able to adapt will make themselves more marketable to potential clients and customers.
5. Be Firm
While clients and customers should always be treated with the utmost respect and civility, contractors and freelancers must be aware of the business relationship’s nature. They are not your boss. They’re more like business partners. With this in mind, be willing to stand your ground about the things that matter, such as pay, deadlines, and so forth.
6. Be Reliable
You can’t go wrong if you’re always getting the job done right. A reputation for reliability is a ticket to success as an IC. It’s that simple. Clients and customers love it, which means you’ll always be able to cite prior assignments when vying for new ones. While you can’t please everyone and will likely encounter “Karens” and “Kyles”; as a result, the aggregate experience will tell a more accurate story.
There’s something to be said for the freedom and entrepreneurial allure of working as an independent contractor. With that said, it all hinges on the ability to secure new work opportunities. Nothing is guaranteed. That’s why it’s critical to know how to find work. Your livelihood — and all its perks — will depend on it.