Like most freelancers, I chose to freelance for the flexibility and freedom. For me, that flexibility and freedom comes with a price of isolation, loneliness and disconnection from people. While there are great online communities for freelancers to bounce ideas off each other, ask for advice and ‘hang out’, there is a part of me that still craves the aspects of my 9-5 job.
I found a solution that works perfectly for me. I work on-site for one of my clients, a few days each week. While this seems to fly in the face of why I chose to freelance, it actually makes me enjoy freelancing more.
Here are 3 reasons why I choose to freelance on-site and from home:
Camaraderie of working with great people
The number one thing that I missed about working a 9-5 is satisfied. I get to go to an office and work with a group of great people. Sitting in a room with others working on the same project gives me a sense of camaraderie that I don’t get working on my own, in my home office, in a café or a co-working space. Getting input and suggestions from a group of peers is invaluable and benefits me as a freelancer, allowing me to hear different perspectives. I also love being able to bounce ideas off people in real time, rather than waiting for an answer in a Facebook group or a reply to my email.
After a few days of working on-site, I am ready to leave that environment, work in the quiet seclusion of my home office, wearing whatever I want –one thing I love about freelancing. Win, win.
Work on a variety of tasks and projects
In the current climate of funding cuts, not replacing staff who resign and redundancies, I am often asked to work on other projects that I wouldn’t normally get to work on as a freelancer. Doing what I love every day, can also get monotonous. Maybe I have a short attention span or shiny object syndrome. Whatever it is, being given the opportunity to work on a variety of tasks and projects while on-site, allows me to freelance without distraction. I don’t have a hundred passion projects on the go at once, because my desire for diversity of work is satisfied.
Be honest though. If I don’t have the skills to do a project, I decline it. If I don’t want to do the project because it’s not something I enjoy, I decline it. I am a freelancer at the end of the day, and I get to choose what I want to work on. I can say no.
Often leads to more work and steady income
Another challenge freelancer’s face is steady income. Working on-site, building relationships and being open to working on a variety of projects can lead to more work and steady income, simply because I’m there, in front of them, on a regular basis.
A word of advice on this though – don’t ‘milk it’. Don’t create work for yourself. Organisations will quickly see through you and will have no hesitation finding someone else.
I see this as a ‘win win’ solution for me. I enjoy the things I miss about working my 9-5, without the hassles of working full-time as an employee. Working onsite will not be for every freelancer, but don’t turn down the opportunity if it presents itself, because you just might enjoy it.
- Why I love freelancing on-site and from my home office - October 12, 2015