In a post Covid world the role of a freelancer will change dramatically. More people will be working from home or hot desking as office space necessities are down sized. In this short guide we’re going to discuss 5 important tips for freelancers. This will be useful for both experienced freelancers and people who’ve recently found themselves in the freelance realm either by choice or by necessity. Applying these tips will protect your future and improve your productivity and effectiveness.
The first tip is to shop around for office space. If you don’t intend to work solely from home then you’ll need to see what deals are out there and which providers offer all the things you need. Ask if you can have a free trial to see what the working environment is like. Make sure you find out and then test out the internet speeds as this can be very important for certain jobs. You need to make sure that you like anywhere that you commit to, particularly if you need to commit to a set period of time. Ideally you want somewhere that is flexible particularly if you’re hot desking, but depending on your role you may need the guarantee of a regular space for an extended period of time. This research can take some time initially but will ultimately save you many hassles further down the line.
The second tip is to manage your time well. While many freelancers enjoy the flexibility of working when they like this can become a problem when you’re getting contacted late at night, particularly if you have clients or colleagues living in different time zones. Try and set specific work hours and stick to these, resisting the temptation to check e-mails outside these times in order to maintain a healthy work life balance. Use calendars and to do list to streamline your work efficiently and also to keep yourself accountable.
Thirdly it is vitally important to keep on top of your health. Without your health you won’t be able to be productive at work so an investment in wellness is well worth the effort. Take the time to eat well, stay hydrated and try and exercise a few times each week. Beyond that relaxation and good quality sleep goes a long way to improving both your mental and physical wellbeing. Simple tasks like yoga, prayer and mindfulness can bring about subtle improvements in your health that can be done in just a few minutes each day. Investing in your health is arguably the most important thing you can do in your life.
It is really important for freelancers to not too be reliant on one source of anything. You are very vulnerable if you rely on one company or one individual for your work. The whole idea of freelancing is flexibility so try and spread the risk over multiple providers or clients. Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket. If you rely on one source for all of your freelance work and that source disappears for whatever reason your income has just disappeared in the blink of an eye.
The final tip is to always stay on the right side of the tax regulations in the country that you reside in. Tax requirements differ greatly from country to country so it is important to be aware of the regulations. Depending on your specific situation and knowledge base it may be wise to hire and accountant well versed with the tax laws in your countries, particularly if you’re receiving payments in various different currencies. While you can figure out these requirements yourself it can be a timely process and any mistakes could leave you with problems you’d rather not have to deal with. If you can’t get a personal recommendation to an accountant then research online for one you feel will be a good fit for your personal situation.
In closing we’ve looked at 5 key things and freelancer should be aware of to make their lives much easier as they experience their freelance role. Apply these tips to your life and begin to the enjoy the benefits they bring.