Freelancing, otherwise defined as the freedom to work on your own terms, certainly has its perks. You can wake up anytime you want, work from home or a cafe or a bar, be in charge of how long you work. It sounds like a dream. As fascinating as freelancing looks, it comes with its share of headaches. I’m not trying to defer you from freelancing, but here are some freelance problems you should be prepared to experience:
Freelancers! Prepare to Face These 7 Freelance Problems
1. Collecting payments
If you’re starting out fresh, clients are bound to take advantage of you. The most commonly faced problem by every freelancer is receiving money from the client after the work is done. Payments get delayed, postponed, invalid excuses come up, and so on. Email them, send friendly reminders time and again. This is a freelance problem listed in every list of freelancing tips for beginners.
2. Time management
Finding the motivation to work on some days can get hard. Don’t let that stop you from finishing what you started. When the laziness steps in and pulls you back to your cozy bed, stay strong. Make a schedule for yourself and set some specific timings to finish your work. The thought of sitting with a coffee mug watching TV can be a powerful distraction, so stay strong and loyal to your schedule.
Your clients won’t know how many other projects you’re working on. Every client will assume that their project is the first on your list of priorities. If you don’t manage your time correctly, all your work will eventually pile up and meeting deadlines will turn into a nightmare. This is going to lead to extremely long and exhausting working hours, the very thing you’ve been trying to stay away from.
4. Learning when to say no
This case is one of the most faced issues in freelance problems. I know the idea of having a lot of clients and no shortage of work sounds good, but after a point it’s just not feasible. Plan out how much work you can take and only take on that much. Once you have your plate full, there’s no point in going back for extras you don’t have space for. Avoid creating a mess of everything and invest time in the quality of work you put into the projects at hand.
5. Saving money
With no fixed flow of income, it’s crucial to start saving from the very beginning. Use your money wisely, pay your bills, and save as much as you can. With freelancing, you can forget about any Diwali bonuses or provident funds waiting for you. So any holidays or vacations you take will have to be from money saved.
As a freelancer, you don’t always have work waiting for you every month. Some days it might be a dry spell, and with no income, it’s your own savings you’ll have to fall back on.
6. Get a life
Yes, I know I spoke about time management and deadlines. But too much work can make you dull. Set a convenient time to work but also set time aside to go out. Constantly working to submit projects before deadlines and taking on new projects will turn you into a workaholic worse than any company could. What’s worse is working all alone will make the whole experience dreadful.
With no coworkers, no help, no partners, it can get overwhelming and give you a feeling of isolation. Instead, go out every once in a while, meet people, interact with others. Along with making you feel less isolated, this can also serve as a channel to find inspiration. This is the most common freelance problem among freelancers.
You might not think too much of this but it’s vital to get these things clarified beforehand. As soon as you get a client on-board, ensure there’s a written agreement in place. Whether it’s about when the payment is due, deadlines, or any other specifics, it’s always advisable to have it written down and agreed upon. Handling legalities stringently is one of the most precious freelance advice you will receive. Read the agreement carefully and thoroughly before you sign it and make sure there are no loopholes.
These are just 7 of the problems that freelancers have to experience. If you’re a freelancer, leave a comment below and share your freelancer tips and tricks, the problems you faced and how you took care of it.