It’s understandable why you might be considering leaving your 9-5 corporate job for a full-time freelancing career, with so many working professionals desiring more freedom and control over their work.
You start daydreaming about spending your days doing what you love and not having to answer to anyone. After all, who doesn’t like taking a nap in the middle of the day or working from the beach seems more appealing than back-to-back Zoom sessions?
Still, giving up the security of a regular salary to start freelancing while working full time might be a scary prospect. What if we told you you didn’t have to do it? Starting Freelancing while working full-time is a popular option to test the waters without fully committing. Check out 501words for more ideas.
Freelancing while working full-time on the side is no easy task. It’s a delicate balancing act that isn’t for everyone. It is, however, not only possible but also incredibly profitable if you have perseverance and effective time management.
Steps To Help You Get Start Freelancing While Working Full-Time
Examine Your Employment Contract
If you work in a writing capacity, it’s likely that your boss has forbidden you from publishing similar content. You don’t want to break a non-compete clause since your professional reputation would surely suffer, even if your employer doesn’t dismiss you or take legal action.
Double-check your contract and read all of the fine languages to be sure you’ve covered all of your bases.
Speak with your boss
Although informing your boss about your freelancing ambitions isn’t required, there are various things that could occur. First and foremost, she will be able to inform you whether or not your work is legal. There may be certain restrictions; for example, if your day job requires you to write about the medical device business, your boss may tell you that you can freelance on any topic except this one.
Second, telling your boss you’re starting freelancing while working full time is far preferable to her discovering your job on the internet.
Make sure you let her know that this role is still your top priority when you give her the heads up.
Make a Timetable
After a long day at the office, the prospect of settling down to work much more may seem unattractive. However, you can’t start the freelancing profession unless you consistently produce. It is critical to create a schedule.
Start with a low-demand quota — perhaps 25 to 30 minutes throughout the week and two hours on weekends. Consider increasing your workout time to 45 minutes to an hour on weekdays and four hours on Saturday and Sunday as time goes on.
Set aside a specific time for pitching
Many freelancers are startled to learn that pitching is equally as crucial as doing when it comes to starting a freelancing career. While working on a regular basis can help you improve your talents, you won’t be able to get any bylines or clients unless you pitch.
You’ll get inquiries from repeat customers, recommendations, and clients who have seen your work elsewhere once you’ve established yourself. For the time being, you’ll have to reach out to clients proactively. Devote at least four hours every week to locating, researching, and contacting your objectives.
Look for freelancing opportunities
You should also look for freelancing jobs on the employment board in addition to pitching publishers. You can find relevant jobs by searching for “freelance writer,” “contract writer,” “writer for hire,” “freelance blogger,” “short-term writer,” “remote blogger,” and other variants on those terms. Simply type in “designer,” “producer,” “photographer,” and so on to uncover the chances that are perfect for you.
When determining which gigs to apply for, there are a few things to consider
First and foremost, does it necessitate a high level of subject matter expertise or considerable experience? Someone seeking an expert is unlikely to hire a new writer.
Second, will you be given a byline or credit for your work? There’s nothing wrong with ghostwriting, but individuals who are just starting freelancing while working full time should focus on credited work. You need content with your name on it when pitching new editors or clients, applying for other projects, or adding clips to your portfolio.
Third, how long will the job take? It’s easy to get carried away and overcommit. Smaller freelancing assignments are ideal because you’re still working a full-time job. If you take on a project and don’t complete it on time, you’ll harm your reputation in the freelancing community.
Inform Your Contacts
Friends, family, and professional contacts can all be excellent sources of clients. Use social media to spread the word that you’re now starting freelancing on a large scale.
Make an online portfolio
Editors and clients would most likely want to view examples of your work, if not your freelancing portfolio. Create a portfolio website and submit samples for imaginary journals or companies to speed the process rather than waiting until you’ve built a big body of published work.
For example, if you want to cover music, you could create a long-form piece for an imagined magazine on a local band. If you wish to pursue a career in recipe writing, you could write four or five recipes for a food magazine.
Why Should You Start Freelancing While Working Full-Time?
A number of reasons for starting a small business and living the entrepreneurial dream while keeping your full-time job.
How to Integrate Freelance Work and Full-Time Work?
Is it possible to start freelancing while working a full-time job?
Yes! Here are our greatest ideas for juggling freelance work with a full-time job and balancing your 9-to-5 with extra freelance clients.
- Determine what activities you enjoy outside of work
You’ll probably have to let things go because you’ll be taking up jobs in your spare time. Through this, You can start earning some extra cash while gaining new professional abilities.
- First and foremost, put your full-time job first
Giving your full-time job your undivided attention is professional and suitable while you’re still employed full-time. You’d expect the same from someone who worked for you or for your firm!
- Recognize the difficulties of starting freelancing
If you’ve ever functioned as a freelancer, you’re aware that it comes with a lot of expenses. There may be a lot of meetings and correspondence while you’re onboarding a new client. Working with “repeat clients” as much as possible will help you plan for this overhead (in terms of both time and resources). You can also devise ways for speeding up specific aspects of client onboarding, such as the creation of documents and other training materials.
- To assist you with your freelancing business, consider forming a partnership with another freelancer
Working as a freelancer comes with a lot of administrative overhead, so you don’t always have time to accomplish the actual work. Sharing responsibilities with another qualified freelancer is a fantastic strategy to reduce stress.
- Consider collaborating with clients who are located in different time zones
When working remotely, time zones might be a challenge. If you choose a client that is a few hours away from your home time zone, you can take advantage of them.
- Make sure your time estimations are accurate
Your time is extremely valuable, especially when you only have so much of it. Learn how to establish estimates that work for your schedule while scoping your projects, especially if you’re working from home. The longer you work on a given type of freelance-style project, the better at predicting your own time you’ll become.
Learn how to schedule an ideal day as a freelancer in this article below.
- When starting freelancing, set explicit customer expectations
Your freelance job deliverables should be clear and straightforward. Your client has hired you to do work and has put their faith in you to do it well. You don’t have time to rework your work. Furthermore, if you need to handle several modifications, this will become costly.
In any case, having a clear understanding of your client’s expectations is an excellent business strategy to employ while working as a freelancer.
- When freelancing, be honest about your time and availability
This may appear to be a bold remark, but inform your client that you have a full-time commitment. This doesn’t have to sound like “I work full-time.” You’re not available during regular business hours, for all the client knows, and that’s that.
Setting this expectation for a client upfront sets the tone. It will prevent that client from anticipating a response during normal business hours, which you are unlikely to be able to provide.
- Consider when you’ll be able to start your freelance project
Set a Monday morning deadline for the final deliverable and a Thursday night deadline for the final review (for example). This allows a client to assess their work on Friday and provide criticism that you can address over the weekend.
Alternatively, you can impose strict timelines and rules for receiving and incorporating criticism.
- It’s okay to say no
Projects don’t always work out. Even if the ideal freelancing project comes your way, it’s perfectly acceptable to decline if you can’t fit it into your schedule.
- While starting freelancing and working full-time, avoid burnout
Keep track of how much time you spend working and, if necessary, set aside time for yourself. Take a break this weekend and unwind. If you can, sleep in! Maintain a proper work-life balance.
- Make certain it is worthwhile for you
To start freelancing, you have to give up a lot of your free time. Is it really worth it? What is your motivation for doing it in the first place?
- As a freelancer, work efficiently to save time
Make a list of little objectives for yourself. Sometimes when I run, I try sprinting to the next light post. That’s a modest target. If you’re at work and you have a few emails to go through, make it your goal to finish them.
- When you’re starting freelancing, keep track of your time and check whether its legal
Keeping track of your time is an excellent approach to figuring out how long things take you. It can also assist you in climbing out of a rabbit hole you’ve dug for yourself.
Examine your contracts to ensure that there are no non-compete clauses in your full-time employment or any potential freelancing contracts you accept.
Additionally, many people have a particular concern: whether is it legal to work freelance while you are employed full time in an organization? We’d say it’s entirely dependent on an organization’s contract or how adamantly opposed to freelancing your organization is. As a result, it may be legal and ethical in your organization but not in another’s. So, before you begin your new job, double-check with your company.
- Make use of two computers
I’d recommend acquiring a new computer for your freelance business if you don’t already have one. It helps me separate my concerns about what I’m working on by having two computers. It also enables me to sync many browser profiles, each with its own set of bookmarks, password manager settings, and security levels.
You’ll have no issue running your own business and meeting deadlines in the future if you can find a method to devote a few hours each day to your freelance business while still working full-time.
It involves dedication and perseverance, as well as a healthy dose of self-promotion. But if you follow the advice above and put in the effort, you’ll be one step closer to realizing your dream of starting freelancing while working full-time.
Moreover, you’re prepping yourself for how disciplined you’ll need to be once you’re starting freelancing while working full time, whether you get up at 5:00 a.m. or stay up late working on your tasks.
It’s ultimately up to you. It depends on the level of dedication required by your clients, but many people do start freelancing while working full-time, whether they admit it or not.
Outside of your full-time employment, the freelancing niche can be a terrific method to bring in extra cash each month and work toward savings goals, as well as a great way to maintain contacts you’ve built when starting freelancing previously.
Finally, starting freelancing while working full time can be a terrific way to keep practicing in-demand professional skills that you might not be able to use at your full-time job, and it can also offer you more joy and reward than full-time work.
We hope you can maximize your freelancing while working full-time!
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