Full time traditional employment is being replaced by gigs and side-hustles. Sometimes it’s out of necessity- the United States is in a slow recovery from a nearly decade-long recession- but other times it is out of a desire to work on your own terms, and Millennials are leading the way. So what does it take to make it in the gig economy?
Millennials tend to want to push the boundaries of traditional work in favor of more flexibility. Sometimes it’s because they don’t want to work the typical nine to five schedule of yesteryear, seeking instead the flexibility to work when it is convenient for them.
Other times it is because they don’t want to be tied down to a cubicle farm and would rather work on vacation so they can take more vacations or work from home so they can cut down on their commute. Studies show that telecommuters are 13% more efficient than their office-bound colleagues, likely due to decreased stress over having to work in the same environment all the time.
Freelancers also have a lot of freedom. They can choose who their clients are and which projects they want to do. They also get sick less often because they don’t have to be around sick clients and coworkers. Commutes are cut down to only necessary trips, which saves an average of 26 minutes twice a day.
There are a few things you will have to be able to do in order to succeed as a freelancer:
Keep business cards handy and pass them out like candy
Keep your portfolio up to date
Market yourself like you would a company
Maintain relationships with past clients – they are more likely to give you return business
Work with a contract to keep expectations on course
Always complete your work when you say you will
Being your own boss means a lot of extra paperwork and responsibilities, but it can really pay off in terms of your overall wellbeing. You will have to take care of your taxes with an accountant. You will be responsible for your own health insurance. Most importantly you are completely on your own for your retirement planning.
Learn more about what it takes to make it in the gig economy from this infographic. Freelancing isn’t an easy lifestyle to maintain, but being your own boss can mean a happier and healthier and more financially stable you in the long run.
Inforgraphic by JOBVINE