People are different and so are their means of livelihood. Nine-to-five office jobs aren’t for everyone, and sometimes working at one’s own pace is what’s preferable, convenient and efficient. Deeksha Khanna explores the perks and perils of freelancing
People who choose to work from the luxury of their homes or find it easier to work from home are termed as freelancers. There’s no doubt regarding the fact that everyone has to earn their bread and butter, but some people just need their own space and can’t have people sitting on their head while they work. They prefer working from home vouching for a better quality of work when they are in a relaxed and comforting atmosphere. However, like any other job, freelancing has its own set of ups and downs.
Flexible work timings
What’s worse than waking up early in the mornings? Waking up early in the morning to get ready for work. But when you’re freelancing or working from home, you don’t have any such compulsions. You can wake up at your own sweet time and get to work as per your convenience. And in case, some day, you have either an important appointment or family commitments, you can come back and finish your work later at night.
Helps build portfolio
For those who are studying and need a part time job, freelancing is a really good option. Students do not get time to go and work another job after college, so if they want to earn extra income they can freelance in fields of their choice, may it be as web designers, music and video editors, writers and so on. Freelancing will not only earn you extra income but will also add to your work experience. It might be a good option for people between jobs also to work as a freelancer while they look for other permanent jobs.
The biggest luxury for people who work from home or freelance is the gift of time. No time is wasted in travelling in the hot, sweaty weather or waiting for a bus when it’s raining. You can just simply walk from one room to the other in a matter of seconds and sit on your desk and work. This leads to increase in efficiency and prevents loss of time. Usually, in office scenarios, there are people having conversations and discussions all around you which can be distracting and you can’t concentrate on your work. Home gives you the option of locking yourself away in a room, thus helping you focus.
This may be just be the Achilles Heel of a freelancer. You might not have people around you to distract you, but when you sit down to work there are so many more interesting things going on, that it makes it a tad hard to focus on what you’re supposed to be doing. This brings in the need for self discipline when you are working from home. You can run your entire business on a laptop now. Unfortunately, it’s the same place where you can read funny articles or spend time on Facebook seeing what is going on in your Facebook friends’ lives, and become an expert at Texas Hold ‘Em. Snap out of these distractions.
There are high chances of communication lapses, as most of the communication takes place through non-verbal mediums. Be comfortable communicating. Unless you want to just be waiting all the time, you’ll need to reach out to other people as a freelancer. You’ll need to be prepared to market yourself, to drum up business, and to chase leads. You will also need to be happy to turn around work quickly and according to the client’s or employer’s needs and changes. And all of this requires good negotiation and interaction skills. Fortunately, much of this can be done by email, meaning that you can rely on writing to connect but it does mean you’ll need to be prepared to put yourself out there and not just sit about waiting for leads.
Freelancing can be risky in terms of steady inflow of income and job availability. There are many times that freelancers may find themselves out of a job as they have no fixed job and other times they might have a lot of work. The client may sometimes delay the income and you may have to pester him to pay you, which can be really irritating. So therefore the income flow is not constant and many a times freelancer may find themselves jobless, even if for a while.
All things said and done, freelancing gives you a plethora of options to enhance your skills and sharpen your resume. Ensuring that you stick to deadlines and provide your clients the deliverables that they’re looking for, you can choose to take up the challenge and go for it. Think it through and follow through!
Volume 4 Issue 12