Do you have business savvy, great writing or computer skills, or some other valuable commodity businesses will pay you to provide? If so, you might want to consider the world of freelancing or consulting. Freelancers and independent consultants typically are self-employed, but they also may have periods of time of being contractual workers for a company. (Contracted workers may receive regular pay, but usually do not receive benefits.) As a freelancer or consultant, you may work from home most of the time, or you might spend most of your time in your clients' workplaces.
Is Freelancing / Consulting Work for You?
Turning the dream of self-employment into reality begins by thinking carefully about what you want to achieve. Do you just want to earn some extra money on the side or do you intend to launch a whole new career? If you desire to be self-employed full-time, realize that it will take a while to build up your business to the point it can support you. If you or your family depends on your income, plan on staying at your current job until you have saved enough money to cover your living expenses for a year plus your business expenses. If you're not looking to produce a full-time income, you have more flexibility in how quickly you get your business going, and how many clients you need.
You also need to consider your own personality, level of expertise, willingness to take risks, and ability with the "business side" (accounting, marketing, etc.) of being self-employed. Not everyone is designed to be self-employed as their primary means of employment. (Many people, however, enjoy having a side business to produce extra income.) Taking a quiz can help you think through some of the critical factors in self-employment. Here are two quizzes to try: Is Self-Employment for You? and the Consultant/Free Agent Quiz.
Resources for Consultants and Freelancers
85+ Tools & Resources for Freelancers and Web Workers and Freelancers' Toolbox - 30+ Online Freelance Resources for writers, photographers and programmers
AllFreelance.com- Directory and articles blog aimed at freelancers, consultants, & the self-employed, offering many helpful tips, advice & resources for home business owners.
eLance.com- Leading site for getting online work; "communicate your talent, showcase your portfolio, and stand out from the crowd with your state-of-the-art profile on Elance"
FreelanceJobSearch.com- Real time listings of freelance job openings
MBAFreeAgents.com- Serving "experienced MBA graduates around the globe who join to view vetted opportunities and meet peers to advance and execute their business ideas and careers....join our community of 18,000+ MBAs and see how you can leverage our services and partnerships."
Aquent.com- "Global staffing agency for freelance/contract and temp-to-perm placement for marketing and design professionals."
iFreelance.com- Search opportunities, create a profile, and more.
[Please note that these resources are provided as a service, and their inclusion does not connote an endorsement.]
If you would like professional assistance in determining if self-employment is right for you or in choosing the best type of self-employment for your gifts and abilities, we invite you to look into our career coaching services. After reading about our services, you can schedule a free consultation session to discuss which career services would best meet your needs. We would consider it a privilege to help you discover who God has created you to be and what He has designed you to do!