Ep 2.2 – Knowing When to Become a Freelancer

 In Business, Podcast

On this episode of the Design Hustle Show, hosted by myself, Jeff Brown, I discuss how to know when you should strike out on your own and become a freelancer. I go in depth into my own experience and career, how and when I started and how it became what it is today. Knowing when to become a freelancer, or to create a side gig, no matter what industry you’re in, is different for everyone. That said, there are three questions that you need to ask yourself when considering becoming a gig worker:

  1. Am I not cut out to be someone’s employee? Do I want to be in charge all the time?
  2. Do I think I can do something better – or more uniquely, efficiently, inexpensively, etc. – than how it is currently being done?
  3. Do I need the income from a side job/freelance gig (who doesn’t?)

These (and perhaps many more) can help you decide quickly if you should pursue a freelance career or at least test the waters.

As I mentioned with the anecdote regarding my daughter, you’ll need to ask the five W’s and H – who, what, where, when, why and how. Answer to these questions will help you get started. To be clear though, you don’t need to have EVERYTHING figured out to start freelancing. You should, however, have a basic idea how what you’ll do to make money and what/how much you’ll charge.

Additional “nice-to-haves” would include (in no particular order):

  1. A logo
  2. A website
  3. A strategy for attracting customers (either traditional marketing, word-of-mouth, social media, etc.)
  4. A system/workflow for receiving payments
  5. Creating a budget for you and your business (income and expenses too – remember it takes money to make money)
  6. A portfolio of work or inventory of products to sell

I want to reiterate – the items above are not necessary to start freelancing/creating a side gig, however, you’ll probably need them at some point and should be part of your thought process for determining if a side gig is right for you (sounds like one of those ridiculous medication commercials).

Additionally, I discuss how many gig workers are operating in the United States as of 2022 – which is 57.3 million freelancers/gig workers. Of those, freelancers tend to work between 11 and 30 hours a week – far less than the 40 hours the rest of us put in for our employer. 25% of gig workers (which include Uber drivers and Doordashers) are freelancers – IE freelance designers, developers, accountants, etc.

Give the show a listen – it’s full of good info and nuggets of wisdom.






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