Should You Be A Freelancer? The Pros And Cons
Many people consider becoming their own boss, and a great way to tackle this endeavor is by becoming a freelancer. But just because being your own boss sounds like a wonderful opportunity, it doesn’t mean that it’s the right choice for everyone. Before deciding on whether or not you should become a freelancer, it’s very important that you weigh the following pros and cons.
Pro: You can set your own hours.
One of the benefits of being a freelancer is that you can typically set your own hours. This allows you to work around your personal life or other responsibilities or events you have on your schedule. Plus, if you’re a night owl, it allows you to work late at night instead of succumbing to the normal 9-5 workday.
By setting your own hours, you can typically also decide to work as much or as little as you want. If you really want to earn a great deal of money, then you can work often. If you’re just working to save some extra cash, then you can work less. The choice is ultimately up to you.
Con: You’re responsible for your own success.
When you work as a freelancer, you are responsible for finding your own gigs. This means that you have to work extra hard to lock down clients and keep them happy. If you don’t have any clients, you will not be making any money. If you have too many clients, you may feel bogged down by the amount of work you have to do.
Pro: You can set your own rates.
As a freelancer, you are usually allowed to set your own rates. This way, you don’t have to be stuck working for minimum wage or getting paid way less than what you’re worth. Instead, you are allowed to earn as much money as you want and charge what you feel you are worth.
Con: You have to deal with difficult clients.
When you work for someone else, you can usually pass difficult clients off to a manager or even the owner of the business. When you’re a freelancer, dealing with difficult clients is going to be your responsibility. You will now be forced to handle all the inquiries, complaints and demands that your clients have, and this can be extremely overwhelming.
Pro: You don’t have a long commute.
When you take a job as a freelancer, you can say goodbye to those long commutes. Most freelancers opt to work from the comfort of their own home, allowing them to literally roll out of bed and go to work. If you do take on jobs that force you to work on site, you can agree to those that are close in proximity to your home, making it easier for you to get to and from the office.
Con: You have to do everyone’s job.
One major con of being a freelancer is having to take on multiple jobs. You can no longer just be responsible for your craft. Instead, you are responsible for sales, accounts payable, accounts receivable, office manager and every other position your “company” needs. If you are unsure of how to handle these roles, it could pose a problem.
Pro: You don’t have to deal with annoying coworkers.
Every office has that one person that nobody can stand, and when you’re a freelancer, you no longer have to deal with those annoying coworkers. Instead, you get to work alone, and as long as you don’t annoy yourself, you’ll be much better off.
Con: You miss out on office activities.
Although working as a freelancer means getting away from annoying coworkers, you will also find that you miss out on office activities. There is always something nice about building relationships and having someone to talk to. It’s also nice to go out every now and then and celebrate birthdays or other company accomplishments. When you’re a freelancer, you will miss these activities.
Pro: There’s usually work available.
Even if you’re struggling to land that great gig, there’s usually always some type of work out there for freelancers. If you’re a writer, you can always start working for a content mill like WiseGeek to generate some income. Online transcription companies are also always looking for qualified individuals to join their staff. And websites like freelancer.com and odesk.com provide a variety of freelance opportunities for people with different skills. Do your research and take on smaller jobs until you can land the job you want.
Guest Author: Meyling Lau is a freelance writer with a creative ability to combine personal experience and research into entertaining, educational articles on a wide range of topics.