How to Track Freelance Job Leads Via Spreadsheet

Throughout our careers we freelancers experience alternating seasons of high and low activity. While we may still have projects during seasons of low activity, they may not be as demanding or as regular. During high-activity months, however, we have several leads and potential clients sending queries to our inbox.

To some freelancers, keeping track of these leads is just as easy as remembering them. But for those freelancers — like me — who are on the forgetful side, we need to have a system in place. Because of this, I’ve created a spreadsheet to manage my leads. After all, I don’t want to leave potential clients hanging.

Here’s how you can make a similar spreadsheet yourself. Read More about How to Track Freelance Job Leads Via Spreadsheet

Reestablish Contact With Your Long Lost Clients

We all have stories of that great project we worked on once, or that fabulous client with whom we established the world’s best working relationship. These experiences make inspiring stories that spur us onwards and upwards, to new projects, and new adventures.

But this week, I began to wonder: what had happened to those past clients I’d loved so much? Read More about Reestablish Contact With Your Long Lost Clients

4 Tips for Holiday Season Stress Reduction

As we move into another holiday season, I’m already noticing an increase in my stress levels. During the holidays, we all face additional expectations on our time. We still have our regular work to do, but we also have holiday shopping, additional expenses, extra cooking, family gatherings, holiday parties and other activities that seem to take up more time than we have available in a regular 24-hour day.

Most of us also try to take a few days off around the holidays, which can create additional time and budget constraints. For freelancers, no one actually pays you for those days off, and you still need to meet client expectations. Telecommuters and other workers still have about the same amount of work to complete with fewer days to accomplish it. Regardless of your work situation, this still means more stress during the holidays. I have a few suggestions to help you manage your stress and come out of the holidays at least as healthy and happy as you were before the holiday season. Read More about 4 Tips for Holiday Season Stress Reduction

Outgrowing Projects: What to Do When You’re Ready to Move On

497227_chicken_in_broken_egg
Although freelancers and corporate employees both have stages of moving on in their careers, it tends to happen more often in freelancing. Clients sometimes lose funding or focus. Other times we’re called in for short-term projects and aren’t hired again. But there are other times when you initiate the change yourself.
Here are some common reasons why we sometimes feel the need to move on:

What to Expect When Working With a Startup

1131288_meeting_better_results
As a freelancer, I get the chance to work with startup companies that are still too new or too small to have a lot of in-house staff. Because of this, I’ve become familiar with the common characteristics that many startups share. As I come to expect these characteristics with new clients, I become more efficient at avoiding problems and maximizing opportunities. Read More about What to Expect When Working With a Startup

Raising the Dead: Bringing Failed Projects Back to Life

1217399_sinistro_2Recently, I’ve noticed that more new clients are coming my way with a single request: to help them revive or resurrect a project, web site, or product that has failed in the past. I’m also capable of creating failed projects myself — sometimes I look at my track record and try to fix my worst projects hoping that I can make them better. Read More about Raising the Dead: Bringing Failed Projects Back to Life

Climb the Ladder: How Freelancers Can Track Career Advancement

1158788_choice_in_life_1

In the corporate world, it’s easy to track positive mobility in your career. You could get a promotion (a move upward to a position of higher rank or pay), or laterally to a position of similar rank, but with different tasks or projects. Advancement in a freelancing career is not so easy to track, possibly because we each have different definitions of what a freelance “promotion” consists of.

Here are some ways you can climb the freelance career ladder: Read More about Climb the Ladder: How Freelancers Can Track Career Advancement

Freelance Camp: Coming Soon to a City Near You

fc-1Not long ago, I wrote about TDWcamp, a BarCamp-like event for web workers held in Paris a few months ago. It was useful, edifying and a ton of fun. Today, while browsing some showcase articles at Smashing Magazine, I discovered Freelance Camp, a network of freelancers who hold BarCamp-like meetings worldwide. I was surprised I hadn’t heard of Freelance Camp, but it turns out  it was launched just last year.
The first event was a camp in Santa Cruz, Calif., and there have been five of them held in various cities so far. Similar to BarCamps and other unconferences, the agenda is flexible in order to promote learning and free exchange of ideas:

“The concept is easy. Show up. Express interests and ask questions. Break into small groups and exchange knowledge. Become a better freelancer.”

Read More about Freelance Camp: Coming Soon to a City Near You

The Future Of Work: Portfolio Careers

andwhatdoyoudoLast week I explored the concept Noded working. “Noded” is really a subset of a much wider phenomenon emerging in the world of work — the notion of “portfolio careers.”
In her blog on the subject, Katie Ledger — co-author of the forthcoming book “And What Do You Do?: 10 Steps to Creating a Portfolio Career” — describes portfolio careers as work that “uses all your skills and passions…doing two or more jobs for different employers.”
The turbulence and insecurity of a globalized job market means that many people are, in essence, temporary workers with little assurance of a permanent job. As such, people are seeking security by establishing control over who they work with and what they work on. Read More about The Future Of Work: Portfolio Careers