I kind of feel like I am going through freelance bootcamp. There is a lot to learn:
- say no: i took on way to many projects to start with, and I am still paying the consequences. I don’t feel like i have served my first set of clients well, and a lot of that is a direct result of taking on projects I should not have.
- get your own stuff in order first: I dont have business cards, much less an way to keep track of invoices and money, I should have gotten that stuff in place first.
- take deposits: For some reason I did not ask my clients to pay deposits of any sort on jobs. I should have. Partly as a matter of buy in in their part, but also cash flow. I have about $30 in my account and real expenses and bills to pay.
There is more of course. And those are not complicated things to learn. I knew they were true, but its always different when you have to learn something yourself.
I think the biggest thing I am having to learn is is how to work for clients instead of an employer. I have to learn how to be able to challenge people to think about new things and ideas, to really evaluate problems and come up with solutions. This was a lot simpler at NLR…I guess because i had a long history of establishing trust. With clients now they only sort of know me. I don’t have any history. Part of this is just a matter of confidence and practice. But I also have to learn a new way to approach this. I have to educate my clients about process (at NLR i had already done that…or i just did the process), and help them see the value.