The right time to quite your job and go freelance

The right time to quite your job and go freelance

When you have a plan:: even though the best laid plans often go awry, you need a basic outline of what wrk you’ll do and how you’re going to get clients as a freelancer. What work will you do? How will you find new customers? How will you pay the bills before you get your first clients, let alone before you get paid for the first time? Take a look at my freelance checklist for more ideas of wah could go into your plan to go freelance.

When you’re on good terms with your boss and things are okay with your job: It might feel that the right time to go freelance is when you’re fed up with your job or you don’t get on well with your boss. The prospect of the freedom you get from freelancing, from working for yourself, can feel like a dizzying prospect. However, think again. Your current job might be the perfect fit as your first client in your new freelance career. After all, when you leave your job, there’ll be a you-shaped hole that they’ll have to fill. Why don’t they pay you to do the same job as you did before? Just for slightly fewer days ad at your higher freelance rate, of course. Even if you don’t convert your old job into your first client, it’s important to get a good reference from your old boss. Starting out as a new freelancer means you’ll likely have a slim portfolio and no case studies to show. Your boss’ reference makes for a pretty good first testimonial to use before you can fill out your portfolio.

When your bills are paid off and you have savings you can live on for at least 3 months
Making the transition from a job to a freelancer can put a strain on your finances at first.

When you have read every book on freelancing and small business that you can get your hands on and you have a good understanding of what you’re getting into

When you get several paying clients and have enough work to pay your basic expenses: The smart person will have several clients lined up for their new freelance career before they even leave their old job. If you’ve handed in your notice to your current job, there’ll be a notice period of one to two months – or even more. Use this time to find and win new clients, so you’ll have plenty of work on when your job ends. You don’t want to be say twiddling your thumbs on your first day as a freelancer.

When you’ve been in your current job for a few years and your position is stable

When you have a little job experience under your belt: Enough time to know that you didn’t learn squat in school
You can’t get a job and the only job on offer is taking on any freelance work you can find for now

Circumstances dictate nothing else: For example, you have had a baby and it works out cheaper and much easier for you to freelance than pay childcare costs/travel to work.

You’ve taken voluntary redundancy: You have managed to reduce overheads such as your mortgage repayments and could survive on less money. Or you’ve downsized so don’t have so many overheads.

You are lucky enough to have a partner who can support both of you financially while you get your freelancing business under control.

You find despite having a job, you are constantly approached by other companies to do work on the side for them. It might even be you are constantly sought after as a consultant. If you are coming home from your job and starting work on your freelancing, you know you have enough work to ditch the day job…

You have felt for a long time you are unhappy in your job

You fulfil all the above criteria on temperament, savings and have a home office/office in place

You accept the risks but feel there is a gap in the market you can fill.

You are willing to take all the risks…but you still can’t wait…
The best time to go freelance is when you know you can avoid procrastination.
Freelance is by no means easier than a daily 9-5 job. It’s more work, and freelancers fall into that terrible trap of taking a really good job, then sit idle until they need more money.
If you have good work ethics, organized, and good avoiding procrastination, you’ll be fine. But if you know you have a propensity to avoid follow-up or take care of necessary paperwork, you should really reconsider and get your house in order before you consider taking it on yourself.
Being a freelancer means you’re the accountant, account rep, manager, project manger, and the grunt, all well before you do anything creative.
The number 1 thing that you must realize as a freelancer is that you get to deal with the clients face to face. This is both a blessing and a curse. When the client is one that works well with you, it’s awesome, when it is not, you dread the days you went freelance.
You go freelance when you get sick of working for others and not being able to pick your clients.
You then do that for a bit.
Then you go back to a 9-5 gig when you realize you miss your weekends and a steady pay check.
Of course, now you have a boss again and clients you can’t pick. So eventually, you go back to freelance.

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