For most of the freelancers, these are the exceptionally discomforting and troublesome times, more specifically, for the independent workers in hospitality. The reality in this time of crisis seems very dark: restaurants are focusing only on taking outs, markets are empty, hotels are struggling financially, and theatres are dark.
According to Axios, “Hourly-wage workers in retail, food service, janitorial jobs, and even preschool teachers often live paychecks-to-paychecks, and their incredibly slim margins are about to be obliterated.” Because of this situation, it is no surprise that many are eager to give up on freelancing permanently or temporarily. But the only problem is that of timing: the full-time market job is shrinking.
The following are the actions that you should take to catch the attention of hiring the managers, building the book of business, or tap your inner entrepreneur to create a
. You should have to be extra creative to look for work when so much of the economy is in difficult straits.
1. Be creative and open-minded.
You should open the window of your mind and ask yourself how you will define yourself and your skill-set. If you are working as a substitute professor, then have you considered remote work through videos?
Similarly, if you are a waiter, is there any chance for you to deliver food to the people in need of this coronavirus outbreak? This is one of the difficult tasks to perform to identify creative alternatives.
It is so baffling and frustrating that most of the ideas do not work out but creative angles may give you, a freelancer, a chance to unlock an ignored but attractive possibility.
2. Use your network and expand it.
You might have to face the times when you need to help others and ask for help both simultaneously. You have a few friends, colleagues, and other acquaintances and this is the time to ask for help.
Be honest, explicit, and ask if they know someone who knows someone. Recruiters claim that 80% of jobs are sourced through personal efforts and not any kind of professionals.
So, a freelancer must have to be proactive while talking to those who can help you. But, you have to focus on expanding your network. You have to get in touch with your former teammates as well because talking to them might not proves to be a success but it will lead you to a better outcome.
3. Lose the ego.
Some of you have heard the family stories in which your grandfather or grandmother had studied medicine and were trained as doctors but after the immigration, they have to work as hospital janitors to put the food on the table.
You may have to take a pay cut or accept the position that would be a demotion from what you were doing before. You have to open the aperture of your mind to all the opportunities. Plus keep it in your mind that this job is not permanent and you can go back to your previous status over time as the crisis end.
You might face rejection based on being over-qualified but you should lose your ego and ask your client that you will be happy to do their tasks as a freelancer. You might be paid less and you have to work hard to prove your skills but in the end, this will be a great experience for you to work as a freelancer.
4. Do not lose heart.
It is difficult to get an opportunity but to wait for a response to your calls or emails is more frustrating. And if you do not receive a response, that is more humiliating or insulting. You should not take rejections personally because it will not help you in the long run.
Success will take longer to achieve. All of you know that these are the times when everything is in crisis and nothing seems right. Freelancers have to face the challenges of time because it is the chance for them to get a great number of clients and they might get acceptance.
There is an Icelandic expression “Petta reddest” which means everything will work put in the end. Freelancers have to follow this mantra. It seems very helpful in such situations.
5. Make sure your online presence is up to date and attractive.
Most people have accounts on different social media applications and you might add various things on your accounts of Facebook or LinkedIn but you do not edit them often. Ask yourself a simple question: is your online profile helping or hurting your efforts to work as a freelancer and increase your income?
Hunt Scanlon says it in this way, “You have to make sure that you have a picture of yourself that shows a confident and pleasant appearance. Not any cute pictures or anything clever.
This world is in crisis right now and you should have to look like a responsible person who can handle everything. Freelancers should focus on the message and profile to attract the people who can hire you.”
6. Sharpen your story.
Do you have a great story of yourself to tell others? What makes you special as a freelancer? Why people should be attracted to you? In less than 30 seconds, you will be able to answer these questions what makes you the right person for this very opportunity and how you understand the task immediately.
It has a direct relation to your expertise and experience and your working style as well. A great story of a freelancer takes time, work, and feedback to get everything right. Put in the time and effort.
If you are struggling as a freelancer, you have to follow these actions. It will help you in this time of crisis. You have to take the time to future-proof your career. You also have to be a good friend because people need honest and optimistic reassurance. Some might need financial support from you, others might need occupational or social help and you should be willing to give whatever you can as a freelancer. This is the time for all of you to pay back.