By Jonathan London on 22nd October 2014

Ten signs you’re ready to think about going freelance

Change can be daunting under any circumstances and it is particularly so when it comes to taking a different step in your career, especially if it involves leaving a company to start out alone.

Becoming a freelancer isn’t really something you can just decide to do overnight as the circumstances must be right and, more importantly, you must be ready to make the leap yourself.

If moving to the world of freelancing has been on your mind for a while but you haven’t been completely convinced, here are 10 signs you’re ready to think about going freelance.

You can financially afford it

Obviously as freelancing involves leaving your current job, there is the initial issue of a lack of income (as well as these full-time perks). Therefore the first thing that you need to ensure is that you have the funds to pay for bills, payments and expenses to cover yourself for at least three months.

Being able to know that should the first bit of freelance work not come as easily as you hoped, you will still be able to financially survive will ease a lot of worries. Just make sure to bear in mind that freelancing doesn’t guarantee a set monthly income, so the more money you have saved, the better.

You can’t see a long-term future in your current role

This really refers to job satisfaction and the impact it can have on your life as whole. After all, you spend half of your day at work so it is really important that you feel encouraged and content between the working hours.

If you have spoken with your employer and can’t see a real future for yourself within the company or you have made all the progress that is possible, then it is time to look at your other options.

You know exactly what product you can offer

It may be that in your current role there is a specific skill that you offer that you know you excel in.

If you could offer this as a product or service on its own and it is sure to be a success, then you have the beginnings of a freelancing plan in place. You have to start at the very beginning, after all.

You are very organised

There is no doubt about it, you can’t really go into freelancing if you are constantly forgetting dates and losing important documents as you’re not going to build the best reputation for work.

Becoming a freelancer means you are going to have to bill people for your time, know exactly where you are heading for meetings and ensure that you are up to date with what and how to pay your taxes.

If you are able to use various tools, apps, and are naturally a very organised person, then you are on the right path.

Procrastination? Never heard of it

While this may seem like a bit of a random one, if you are easily distracted then freelancing may not come as easy as you hoped. While working from home can have so many advantages, sometimes it can be too easy to be tempted by the children, the TV or another lie in.

If you can safely say that you are able to create an office space and see it as just that, rather than home, then making the transition into the world of self employment will be easier.

You are great at networking

Networking is so important in any line of work, especially when it comes to freelancing, as word of mouth and recommendations can be a very large part of the way in which you gain projects and work.

It is also very helpful if your networking skills have come into play prior to going freelance, as it means people have already experienced your work and will have you in mind should they require your services in the future.

Here’s also some handy advice if you’re looking to brush up your networking skills.

You know how to market yourself

When freelancing it is important that you are able to ‘sell yourself’ to ensure that you get work and, essentially, can pay your bills every month. While networking is essential to this, so is making sure that you can market yourself well.

A cheap and easy way to do this is to start with social media. Networks such as LinkedIn can be really powerful tools when it comes to offering your services as a freelancer.

You have the right tools

To be able to freelance it’s essential that you have the right tools to do so in terms of technology. Having a laptop is imperative especially as you may need to use it for presentations at client meetings, as well as being able to update information on the move.

Having a smartphone is also essential, especially when it comes to the organisation factor mentioned before. As a freelancer, it’s likely that your phone’s calendar will be your new best friend.

You have access to an accountancy service

Sorting out your own finances once you have turned to freelancing can often be confusing and daunting. It’s really helpful to have professional advice and support for the times where things may not always make complete sense.  Why not take a look at our accounting services?

You are confident you will be a success

Having the belief in yourself that you can make it work as a freelancer is one of the most important factors. After all, no one else is going to believe you can do the job well for them if you don’t.

To go into freelancing you must be 100 per cent confident that you can do it and that it is the right path for you.

Jonathan London Written by Jonathan London

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