Cookie-cutter advice of years past not necessarily going to work in 2020, so I am going to take everything I have learnt in my ten years of online business, and form a clearer picture of what will actually lead to success.
I am not going to dwell on the current state of affairs too much. Let's just assume that you plan to start a business that is conducted mostly online, and with minimal, if any, in-person contact.
No productivity life-hacks here. I’m going to share real-world advice that will have an immense impact on your success as a freelancer or remote worker. I have been an online worker for ten years, and had a good deal of success in recent times, but much, much more failure before that.
Freelancing online feels like a race to the bottom. At least that’s what I’ve experienced - both when working as one, and when looking to hire one. You see, sites like Fiverr promise clients the world for tiny amounts of money. They make big promises to both the freelancer and client and fail to deliver to either.
I love working on my own terms. I like choosing when to wake up and when to take my lunch-break. I also really LOVE making my own choices with product development and direction. Let’s be real; who wouldn’t? Being your own boss is the ultimate dream for many of us.
That said, I was in no way prepared to deal with the responsibility that comes with those choices. When I started my first business, I was broke, down, and out. Getting customers was hard and stability was elusive. I failed.
Saying ‘no’ is one of the most important things I have learned how to do during my time as a developer, business owner, and freelancer.
Not saying no can easily lead to a far more enraged client than if you had blindly given in to all of their requests. It can also cost you a lot of money, time and health to try to keep up with constant changes or scope creep.
Now, I’m not saying you should default to “No”, but here are some clear examples I have dealt with first-hand
Whether you are looking to starting a business or already have, you might have already given thought to the pros and cons of owning a business. Personally, it took me many years to fully realize the ups and downs of being self-employed. So much, that I actually ran back to full-time employment for just over a year, before throwing my hands up and running back to the freelance arena.
Here’s what I have learned during my seven years working a web developer.