Some people are working for a day job and are also eyeing to work as a freelancer. Why not? Well, if you look at this like a circus of jobs here and there, your view is right but like a circus, it can also be so much fun when done rightly. One thing that you need to consider is that you have to love what you are doing. If you do not have passion for designing, then erase that freelance design ambition in your mind. You won’t succeed if you lack passion.
So, if you have that passion and you think you can handle both your day job and your freelance design career, then give it a go. But you might need some few tips to help you. We have provided some tips below to help you handle both your day job and freelancing. It would be a challenging in the beginning but when you get used to it, it would be a lot easier. Check the points below:
1. Know your limits.
Before you even started working for freelance, you are already aware of what you can do and what you cannot do. You also know your skills and how far you can make in terms of designing. Make sure that you know your limits. This does not only refer to your skills but also on your schedule and your time management. If you think you cannot work on a certain hour or you can no longer work on a task since you have much to finish, then do not accept it. Your human, not a robot. You have a day job to attend to. If you do not have enough time, then do not accept a project. Or if the client is willing to wait, then that would be okay then.
2. Start networking.
If you are just new, it would really be very challenging to get your market. You have a lot of work to do when it comes to networking for this is the best way to get clients. You also need to create accounts on job boards, make use of social network and try to look for other professionals in your niche who can be of help to you. Networking is very much important in freelancing. You have to give time to it.
3. Have a day-off.
A day job gives a day off to their employees. You can spend that for your freelance work. But that does not mean that you will no longer have breaks. If you do not have lots of projects to work on, then use your day off as your break from both your day job and freelance work. You also need a break once in a while.
4. Discuss jobs thoroughly.
Make sure that you and your client have discussed all the details of a project and you have taken note of it. This way, you can be sure that you will be doing the right thing and you won’t have to contact the client again and again. Getting enough information makes you more efficient. Aside from the project specs, make sure you agreed on the due date, milestones, payment forms and others.
5. Create a strong portfolio.
It is a must to have a portfolio when you are freelancing especially that you would be occupied with your day. Your portfolio will serve as your face online. It can reach people around the globe and it can give you new clients even if you are not online. Make sure that your portfolio has a strong impact to those viewing it. Include your best works and a few words about yourself.
6. Be flexible.
Doing two jobs would be challenging but you can be successful if you are flexible. This means that you should be able to work whenever you have time to and whenever you get a chance to. If you have breaks even just for a few minutes, use that time to check mails and send emails to clients. During lunch breaks, you can do some work also. If you are able to work for few hours in different locations, you will be able to handle both your day job and freelancing well.
7. Create a portable office.
Of course, this would be necessary. A portable office is your buddy when it comes to freelance work. Bring it with you when you go to the office. When the time and situation permits, work on some of your projects. At least, you will be able to accomplish something. See to it that your portable office is complete with everything you need.
8. Follow rules.
You have office rules and you need to follow that when you are still in your day job. Of course, your free time is totally yours but you still have to make sure that you do not break rules while working for your freelance jobs. Remember that you have certain limitations in your office. Following rules is also a mark of being a professional.
9. Use time wisely.
Work during breaks. We have mentioned this in the previous items. If you do not find it hard to do this or if your office permits you to use your “portable office” during breaks, then do it. Lunch breaks are great time to work. Anyway, you won’t be eating lunch for a couple of hours. Spend the rest of your time working on some freelance projects. This can help you finish some jobs faster. If there are other breaks during work, you can also make use of it for your freelance work. You can be guided by 18 Helpful Time Management Tips for Designers.
10. Do not act like you can control everything.
Do not over commit. You cannot control everything especially your day job. You know you have limitations. Make sure that when you accept jobs, you are setting realistic goals for yourself and you will be able to accomplish a job according to what you told your client. When you over commit, its either you will not be able to achieve it or you will finish with poor quality. Do not say yes when you know you are not capable of doing a project or if you do not have enough time to work on it based on your client’s time frame.
It's Your Turn Now
The tips above could surely help you with your careers. If multi-tasking is your thing, then you will be able to do it all well. Just make sure that you do not compromise any of them because both are important. What do you think are other things that can help one survive the work of a freelancer and a regular job at the same time? Add some point that can help our readers.