Being self-employed is becoming an increasingly common scenario for many people, whether they’re new graduates freshly out of college, they’re in their 30s and wanting more professional freedom, or they’re older and want to explore new ventures. This day in age, the concept of being self-employed is unique and often more feasible for a larger number of people.
You can be self-employed in any number of ways, in particular, working as a contract or freelance worker. When you take this route, you have the opportunity to do work that you’re talented at and passionate about. You also get the chance to enjoy flexibility and taking on the projects you’re really interested in.
When most people make the leap to being self-employed, whether they’re a solopreneur, managing a small team, or simply working as a freelancer, they often find that it can be a struggle to appear professional, however. No matter how talented they might be in their niche, if you’re working from a home office or just starting a new venture, particularly on your own, you might be worried that you’ll come off like an amateur.
The following are some of the best tips you can follow to create a professional impression, regardless of where you are in your self-employed endeavors.
One of the most important things you can do as someone who’s self-employed is make sure you’re highly organized. This is easier said than done for some people, but it’s essential. When you’re not organized, it can quickly show to clients and individuals you’re working with.
When you appear as if you’re unorganized, it’s difficult to inspire a sense of trust in possible clients. The best thing you can do to begin is to choose an organizer, such as a journal or date book that will allow you to keep track of everything from meetings and phone calls to deadlines.
Get Your Own Domain Name
Having a blog or website can be extremely important because if someone is trying to find out more about you, that’s what they’re going to look for. When you’re someone who’s self-employed, and you’re making your website, it’s best to go ahead and get your own domain name. It may be more expensive, but it can instantly make you appear more professional.
Have a Pricing System In Place
When you work as a freelancer or self-employed professional, it’s ultimately up to you to set your prices. You don’t want to be unsure of how much to charge when you’re negotiating with a client because it can make you seem like an amateur. Not only do you want to have your pricing set, but it can also be a good idea to have a time-tracking or invoicing system that you use.
There are apps you can use to keep up with time and tasks if you charge by the hour, and you should also send professional invoices. Create a template or use an invoicing system so that when you send them, they’re formatted well and include al the necessary information for you to be paid.
Write Your Emails Well
First, when you’re working on your own, make sure you always stay on top of your emails and respond to people promptly. You don’t necessarily want to respond as soon as you send an email because you can appear desperate, but responding within the same day is a good rule of thumb.
Also, add a signature to the end of your emails, and use only professional language. There can be a tendency to be too familiar when you’re a freelancer, and you’re emailing potential clients, so don’t let that happen to you.
When you work as a self-employed freelancer or entrepreneur, professionalism is what can set you apart from your competition and grow your business. Don’t let it slip through the cracks, even when you’re part of an alternative work environment.