Working from home can be one of the most challenging things that a person can do. Although, it is one of the most tempting career types to have.
The Internet has become a library of open-source knowledge for anybody, which makes self taught skills extremely valuable. In the very beginning though these skills are not there. Many find themselves out ranked by others who have laundry list worth of skills to their name.
In the beginning
I have been in this position myself. When I first began freelancing, money was scarce even though I was working 50 hours a week. I had walked into the world of the skilled trade thinking that I would hit it off immediately but there were hours of work ahead of me before that would become true. Now though, the money is great, the free schedule allows me to experience the life that every successful freelancer has grown to love and I am now in a position where I only do what I love every single day.
This did not just pop up overnight though. Walking into the freelance world is another way of saying you want to become a one-man band in a world of professionals. When starting, experience will be something that you do not have. What you will need is to identify your skills and abilities to make employers want you to work for them. If you do not have any special skills to offer, spend a week binging on courses online to be able to add to your portfolio.
Getting your first gig
Getting the first gig will be your biggest achievement as a freelancer. This is because in the beginning without any experience the only thing representing you will be that portfolio that employers take a look at before choosing who to hire.
What you can do while you’re waiting for the first opportunity to be able to be hired, is to build your virtual self. Make a website. Build an emailing virtual assistant. Create tools that will make you look like you’ve been doing this for a long time. Potential employers search for your work before investing their money and you. If they find a detailed website, portfolio, and offers to do many different types of services they will know that you are the person to hire.
The best tip I can possibly give to any freelancer is if you can find the skills that you are good at, be sure that you put a laser focus on presenting that skill to every possible employer. At the end of the day employers are not looking for people to hire, they are looking for an extra skill or finishing touch to their product. If you have something that you can offer well then make sure that it’s known thoroughly.
Highlight the things that make you rare
When putting together your virtual portfolio make sure that rarity is your goal. If you can find one thing that you can do that will promote and help companies soar then you have completed the hardest part about being self-employed. Highlight the things that you are good at and make sure to show that you’re passionate about your work. Go into as much detail as you can put into the portfolio and just have the big points highlighted. They can read into what you’re capable of and if that is what they’re looking for, you’ll have the job for sure.
There are many useful web hosting services on the Internet for those who do not want to build an entire website to present themselves. The benefit of this is that the task will be completed much sooner than building a website will. The only downfall to it would be having a tool help you build the portfolio limits your freedom in making the portfolio presentation of yourself. This does not mean that you will be limited to one format. There are many tools online that assist people who are self-employed to make them shine.
Working for yourself maybe difficult at times. It is inevitable that at one point of your self driven career things may seem hopeless. This does not mean that things are over, it only shows that you need to push a little bit farther to go to the next level. Many times that little bit can be you do not have your achievements open to the public. If people see what you’re capable of, it will make you so much more desirable in the work world.
@JulianaPayson on Twitter is an associate at InMotion Hosting, a webhosting company mainly for professionals and those of the freelance web caliber. If you have news to share, tips, or thoughts for collaboration please contact her directly. Juliana’s articles on the InMotion Hosting Blog are shared with a 100k monthly readership of their web hosting customers.