Freelance has its pros and cons. You are your own manager and boss, but there are quite a few problems as well. These problems are not all very different comparing to the problems of office workers. If you plan on becoming a freelancer, you should definitely keep reading.
1. Demands of the customers are constantly changing
Clients can be different, as well as their requirements. Services you provide for your client today can be not suitable for another client tomorrow. The requirements will probably grow with every client. This means that when you are a freelancer, you should constantly develop your skills.
2. Different time zones
Freelancers can work with clients from different parts of the world as long as they can speak one language. This obvious advantage has one problem, though. In most cases, you need to adjust to a client’s time zone. You may have to wake up at 3 am to have a video conference or even stay awake all night.
3. You face unpleasant customers
Freelancers have to communicate with their clients themselves. Not every of those clients will be honest, trustful and pleasant to talk to. Some of them can delay payments or don’t pay at all; some of them set impossible deadlines and demand exquisite results. Freelancers have to risk a lot, as not many customers like to pay in advance.
4. Finance management
Working as a freelancer, you need to be sure you earn more than you spend. With time all the freelancers need to become good finance managers.
5. You have to keep the balance between your work and personal life
When you manage your work time, it gets harder to set boundaries sometimes. You need toy have certain hours for work and certain hours for personal life.
6. You need to search for clients
The most important task for freelancers is to find clients. Despite the fact there are so many sites for freelancers, you may face a huge competition. Finding customers is not as easy as it seems.
7. Laziness and procrastination
When you work in an office, you have someone to watch you from time to time. If you are a freelancer, you are on your own. It is very difficult to discipline yourself to work and forget all the distractions there are around you. Procrastination and laziness are freelancers’ worst enemies and you need to fight them.
8. Time management
Sometimes you can underestimate the time you have to finish a task. Many freelancers have time management problems and don’t meet the deadlines. You don’t want that, do you?
Freelancers sometimes have problems with the methods of payment. You may need to get different credit cards and digital wallets because clients always choose comfortable conditions for payment and if you don’t have PayPal, for example, they can find someone who does.
10. You have to be flexible
Freelance always implies satisfying your clients. Sometimes the work that you think is phenomenal may not be suitable for your client. You will have to conform to the wishes of your customers; otherwise you just won’t keep them.
Every working citizen has to pay taxes. Office workers don’t worry about that; tax issues are handled by the accountants in their companies. Freelancers have to handle tax matters on their own.
12. Empty portfolio
When you only start your freelance career, you probably have nothing to show to your potential customers. At the beginning, you may have to work for very little money or even for free just to get some experience and to fill your portfolio.
Things you can do for $50 can be done by some Chinese or Indian freelancer for $10. You just have to get used to that and either work for peanuts or become a very good specialist. Great freelancers don’t have to look for work; it finds them.
When you work as a freelancer, you don’t communicate with people much. You don’t usually have a boss or colleagues. You only contact your clients once in a while. It can influence some people and change their behavior in big companies. Be careful with that.