I’m talking about starting up your self employment/business in the right manner and a key aspect of this is knowing what to expect. Here I want to talk about your own skills coming into it.
Skills That Pay Bills
Normally, and especially on the freelance side people have the distinct impression that being successful is about doing that thing they do really well.
This is completely untrue!
The core of success when working for yourself is about meeting (and exceeding) client expectations. You might not be the best X in the world but if you can set expectations around the service and end product then people who want that will come to you. After all are McDonalds the best burgers in the world? No. BUT they have put procedures in place to make sure that the burger you get in Chicago is the same as the one you get in London.
An Ugly Win
This is something I’ve talked about before but is a key area that separates out successful people. An Ugly win for me can be defined as “Putting client delivery first above pride or procedure.”
On pride, I am absolutely baffled by the picky and perfectionist. These people like web developers and graphic designers etc feel that they have to make everything themselves. Everything has to be bespoke to justify their costs, but sometimes there is a perfect solution out there already. It might be a template or a stock element or whatever. If you can’t put aside your own sort of professional pride in the name of client satisfaction (read profit) then I think you’re going to struggle.
A Million Times
The good news is that even if you aren’t Mozart, you are going to improve. Working for yourself is the fastest and best education you are ever going to have. The sheer volume and variety of clients will undoubtedly test your skillset and force you to find new ways to solve problems. I don’t mean this in an egotistical way but sometimes I look at people who have gone down an employment route. They’ve been in a steady job for half a decade, and I wonder what have they learnt? How have they really grown?
It’s glacial in comparison.