What are the benefits of being a freelancer?
I have over ten years of experience consulting in a corporate agency. I've seen many of my colleagues and friends leave to do it on their own. I feel like I would enjoy being my own boss, but I also have a family that I want to continue to support with benefits and insurance. What benefits of being a freelancer justify giving up the security of a corporate job?
Being a freelancer has its advantages and disadvantages, but as you can see below, many experts here believe freelancing is a worth the risk of potential downsides. The Business.com team recently published an article that covers the main benefits: https://www.business.com/articles/benefits-of-freelancing/
The greatest advantage is the flexibility of creating your own schedule and being your own boss. The disadvantage is there is no one to hold you accountable but yourself. Freelancing is not for you unless you are a self-starter. As a freelancer, you'll be handling every aspect of the business - administrative duties, bookkeeping, client development, and marketing. You'll need to remain disciplined and focused to reap the benefits. Good luck!
I like freelance work. I never had a problem with the fact that my previous employers billed 4+ times my pay. I didn't like it, but I can understand it. I really felt like the biggest advantage was that I could fail on my own. I always felt stifled in the corporate setting. Dealing with the 'we've always done it this way' crowd is not appealing to me. I feel like I can finely tune my craft by being experimental and pushing my limits outside of the corporate setting.
I also appreciate the ability to chose my projects. I have worked on many projects that I objected to, but it's the job so I did it. Now I can chose to ignore those bids asking for $7/hr for a Facebook clone.
If you are concerned about the security, consider freelancing on top of a regular job. If you can manage the time you will gather some capital over the next few years that will afford you the luxury of leaving the regular job. Also, it allows you to make valuable contacts.
Money. Lot of money. Your bosses at the corporation have several problems. They not only have to feed their family, they have to feed your family. Self esteem is the key. And of course the clear sight at your opportunities and tools to make money.
Freedom, you can take on any work that interests you and you work on a "perform or persih" basis, scary at 1st but then you realise every business owner operates on the same basis.
Obviously the freedom to set your own hours, choose who you work with and stop exchanging your hours for dollars to help someone else achieve his/her dream are top benefits.
However you must be disciplined, resilient and comfortable not having a predictable income at least for some time to be successful as a freelancer. I always recommend learning how to set up your "dream job' while still working at your "day job" and then gradually slide into the second stream of income and new business you have created.
People do it every day. Yes, you will be very busy working two "jobs" but it's like raising two children...you adapt ( and you don't eliminate one to focus on the other until one is more independent and needs less of your attention).
Coming from a corporate agency, you might already realize the time growing a business can take and yet, I seldom meet anyone who doesn't think the time they juggled both was worth
I recommend reading Jon Acuff's book, QUITTER. It's an easy read and is personal story about doing exactly what you are asking about.
( On a side note, Jon is still an entrepreneur, but what he originally went after did not have the silver lining he expected and he left that first venture )Working for Dave Ramsey)
You get to work from home, pick your jobs, meet new people, make some money and be free, which I find very satisfying.
The best way to start your own business (or become a freelancer) is to identify the problem and to come up with the solution. It looks that you already possess the skills and there is a need which you can fulfill.
You will benefit by gaining a freedom to set your own schedule and be your own boss. It is hard to put a price tag on this one.
Being a self-employed will enable you to qualify for a Solo 401k plan, which is designed specifically for small business owners and entrepreneurs. This is a great retirement savings vehicle not only because it can be self-directed and will allow you to invest in alternative assets such as real estate, trust deeds and more, but it also offers great tax benefits – with it you can shelter up to $59,000 per year from taxes! Learn more about it here:
Your income level can be unlimited if you have the right business idea and work at it.
If you have to be the sole support of your family, with benefits and insurance, stay with your job unless you are certain you will have enough clients. If, on the other hand, your wife works, and you can put the family on her insurance plan, the freedom of doing your own thing is SUPER! Not being tied to an artificial schedule totally rocks. For me, it's all about the time.
Here is a lovely infographic - http://bit.ly/1KFp3Qj
There are many pro and cons. Its not easy to venture out alone in the unknown.
None the less, if you have talent, have experience of sales and reaching out to clients you can make it out there. Lots of online places to find clients and project, i would certainly advice you to grow locally aswell. Try to get your brand name or identity out in the market and grow.
Certainly being your own boss is great but in my opinion its more than that. It comes with its own unique set of problems.
I'd say, take a few side projects along with your job, a few clients at the beginning will help with the transition. :)
Freelancer means you are self-employed. You have the advantage of picking your projects and the problem of finding enough work. If you are successful, you may make more money than you did as an employee because you have less overhead and do not share the fees generated from it.
Like most self-employed people and business owners, you will work longer hours than you might have as an employee. You do however get to control wtih whom you decide to work. Absent a unique area of expertise, skill or a huge positive reputation, you will have all the same struggles of a solo practioner.
It is a matter of personal preference and whether you like the risk of being self-employed or if you have a choice. The older one gets the more difficult to get employed.