Freelancing is one of those things that are polarizing people. It can be stressful and demanding, or it can be equally liberating and rewarding at the same time. To some it is a dream career, to many, it is stressful and demanding so people wouldn’t try it.
Freelancing is not like a cup of tea for everyone, and it is not more comfortable than regular work. Working as a freelancer means you are empowering yourself, but it can be emotionally and physically taxing. It takes time to build a steady stream of clientele. Freelancers experience an ebb flow in their work and need a plan for lean times. Managing multiple clients and projects at low cost is a great challenge for the freelancer community.
1. Problems Faced By Freelancers
We all are different, and we all react to the new situations differently based on our backgrounds, experiences, and ability to adopt change.
Similarly, Transition from a full-time worker to freelancing is one of those times when everyone reacts differently.
There are times when freelancers feel like they have been thrown into the deep end of the swimming without the proper game plan and them don’t know how to get out of that pool.
Either it is the freelance newbie or seasoned professional, before diving into the freelancing, must have to determine the problems and possible challenges which they have to face on the voyage to be a freelancer.
The career choice to be a freelancer is so inviting and so beckoning. We all want to control our destiny by deciding when to work and how to work. Life would be a heaven if there is no clocking in, no boss breathing over your shoulder, no gossiping at all just freedom to work how and when you like.
But is freelancing that simple and straightforward? Obviously NO!
Life as a freelancer is filled with so many ups and downs, pros, and cons. So, it’s essential for the freelancers to get ready and have a route map in their hands if they want to reach their planned destination.
Therefore, here is the list of some most common problems faced by the freelancers. Have a quick look at all of these issues before you quit your regular 9 to 5 white color job.
2. Too much or too little
Freelancing is the game of extremes. Being a freelancer means you are either too busy or too idle. Some you will end with a lot of work, deadline or assignments and a constant amount of deposits in your account. While on other days you may don’t have a single lead coming your way.
Not even an email or a missed call from your clients. Well, that is frustrating because your saving account is steadily draining.
Pay parity is another big problem associated with freelancing. There is always a bidding war in the box of the client. They pretend to focus on quality, but the cheapest bet wins the game.
It seems funny that the decent high-quality work procured at ridiculously low prices sometimes for free. People call it exposure, but according to me, it is exploitation.
Unfortunately, freelancing as a career means unstable and inconsistent workload and income. You cannot depend on a regular project, client or profit. On the other hand, you know the exact pay you will receive at a traditional 9 to 5 job.
3. Difference between Work and Personal Time
We all hate nine to five grind, Right?
What if the concept of 9 to 5 vanishes? What if you don’t have office timing? No Monday to Friday? No Saturday and Sunday? No breaks for Diwali, Christmas, holidays? No bonus, no promotion, No health benefit?
You will end up with dark circles in your eyes and so many sleepless nights. As the freelancer you are not leaving your office, you are leaving all the benefits as well.
Being your boss is exciting, but it will cost you as well. Working from home means there is no difference between your work time and your personal life. Either you can work long hours and never make time for personal interest, or you don’t work at all.
In such a case proper time management to manage the flow of work is necessary to create the balance between work and life.
4. A lot of legwork
Freelancers are known as the in charge of their owned clients and projects. On the other hand in case of traditional job someone else is responsible for handling the task to you.
Being a sole owner of your entrepreneurial venture, you have to take responsibility for all tasks. So, it means a lot of legwork on your part is essential for the freelancers. To manage your career as a freelancer, you have to wear many hats because you have to market sale and advertise your skills.
5. Not Getting Paid and lack of benefits
Freelancing is all about running the risk of not getting paid on time. What payment follows up is an inevitable torture in this field. Payment for the work done months ago is the nightmare for almost all freelancers irrespective of their area and their experiences.
In freelancing, debt collection is another hat which you have to wear as the sole owner of your business. You can protect yourself from the non-paying clients, but sometimes you have to realize you are at the risk before it’s too late.
Not getting paid for the holidays is another major drawback associated with freelancers. Traditional 9 to 5 job offer a broad range of bonuses, incentive, and benefits along with the salary package. On the other hand in freelancing, you have no right to enjoy such perks and benefits associated with the pay.
6. The Buck Stops with You
In freelancing, there is no luxury to pass on the client problems and office mishaps to someone else. In case of being a freelancer, the proverbial bucks cannot stop with you.
Other than negotiating with some deadbeat clients and soothing the irate client you have to handle things from the male functioning of the office equipment to miss payments.
When your laptop falls in love with death or blue screen, there is no IT professional to fix things for you and to fix things for you. In short, being a freelancer means you are the only one who have to face all the repercussions and after effects of your own decisions.
7. Way forward
Gone are the days when you have to work a regular white color 9 to 5 job for some outstanding earnings. Approximately more than 15.5 million workers are self-employed revealed by The Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Freelancing offers you an opportunity to skip the commute pursue your passion but this lifestyle not without its challenges. Freelancing does have some active and negative parts. What you need to do is to decide if you are willing to take the risk. Freelancing means professional freedom, but it also implies instability and the risk of failure.
The decision to be a freelancer can be a life-changing, but it’s not something you have to take lightly. Only you are the one who can determine whether freelancing as a career choice is right for you or not.
If you are going to make the plunge in freelancing, then the first thing to do is to examine all the pros and cons of freelancing thoroughly.
It will help you to determine the difficulty level of this career choice. If you find rewards outweigh the risks, then jump on a voyage of being a freelancer but if the chance seems too big, then it’s not good to ditch your freelancing job.
In short, we have to admit that freelancing is not more comfortable than the regular job but being your boss is more thrilling and passionate endeavor than being a part of a large team.