Increasing Your Wealth & Value as a Freelancer
Speak & Write Well
I know I harp on these skills sometimes, but speaking is the most sought-after skill in business. Don’t worry if you aren’t a proficient speaker or articulator of ideas, it takes practice and patience in front of clients.
Blogging is a surefire to help you build a reputation and will give you economic benefit in the long run. It also is a great way to help yourself develop by expanding your knowledge bank and can help sell yourself to clients with verifiable credentials.
Our demeanour and the way we present ourself can be an asset. Subconsciously, everyone judges you by how you look. As shallow as that may sound, clients and employers want you to appear trustworthy – for many obvious reasons. Investing money into good clothing should never be a second-thought because we should take pride in ourselves and the work we provide. If we take care of our appearance, it translates into “I can take care of your business.”
Spend 10% on Personal Development
These expenses will eventually pay for themselves many times over. As a web designer, we have to be flexible with the ever changing environment – and designers who have been in the industry for any length of time know this. Ask anyone who has ever been prosperous in their fields and they know that investing time and money into yourself proves to be one of the valuable contributions to their success.
Find a Mentor
There is always someone better than you. This doesn’t mean that you can’t succeed, it means that these people represent a learning opportunity. Seeking someone who has been in the field awhile and has a job you would one day like to obtain is important. These mentors will be able to give you honest feedback, point you in the right direction with big decisions and hopefully put in the good word for you when looking for a job.
If you can, help others. This article by Sean Wes puts things into perspective about how if we “believe it or not, regardless of where we are, you are an inspiration to someone.”
Save 20-30% of your income
This means before expenditures. It’s amazing how much money can accrue over time by following this simple rule. Allocating this passive income into several different streams such as personal projects, investments such as real estate and stocks, or back into society (however you feel appropriate) will help compound your money in less time than most people think.
Being a student, I understand how hard it is to save money when you aren’t making money. Debt is probably an unwelcoming reality for many college students (especially for you Americans), where tuition costs are through the roof. The average graduate leaves post-secondary with $25,000+ in student loans (read more here).. which leads me to my next point..
Eliminate Unnecessary Debt
School loans, car payments and mortgage payments are reasonable debt. This doesn’t mean to let these liabilities pile up. Live within your means and pay these expenses off efficiently. The real problem is unnecessary debts like personal/leisure expenditures. Sometimes cutting back in one aspect of your life can be enough.
This is how banks win. Don’t let yourself get into the rat race of only paying the minimum. If you can, pay off all your debt monthly. This not only looks good on your credit score, but it will help you have more peace of mind knowing you don’t have a load of debt if business ever gets tough.
The financial illiteracy among young people is startling. Don’t use the excuse no one ever told us. Educate yourself and prepare for your future. If you ever want to be a freelancer full-time, these financial skills are crucial to running a business by yourself.