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The Importance of Freelancers Subcontracting And Building Teams
October 31, 2017

Weekly Newsletter for Freelancers

The Importance of Freelancers Subcontracting And Building Teams
In my copy of the Freelancer’s Bible, there is a Chapter No. 11 (page 283) on subcontracting and building teams. I will often refer to this in my articles because it is how freelancers can lift their productivity and income. However, it is more than about productivity and income, it is about work-life balance and having a good family life at the same time.

There is an art in managing teams remotely, but very importantly learning how others have done it successfully. Craig Jarrow’s has an article on the Top 10 tasks to delegate to a virtual assistant which you can read here.

In The Freelancer’s Bible Sara Horowitz and Toni Poynter ask the question Does the client need to know? The question relates to the person that you are completing the work for, you could call it the head contact. They are of the opinion that they don’t need to know and I agree with them. It is because you are like any other business that uses a team approach to getting things done with the segmentation of duties.

The customer does not need to know who completed what part of the contract. What matters to you as the person managing the contract is that the quality of the product or service produced for the client meets your expectations? It all comes down to this timeless quote from Peter Drucker:

"Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things."

For those that wish to learn more about managing virtual teams remotely you can read the preview of Hassan Osman’s best selling Influencing Virtual Teams: 17 Tactics That Get Things Done with Your Remote Employees by clicking here.

Motivational Tip Of The Week

Motivate Yourself!
“You will enrich your life immeasurably if you approach it with a sense of wonder and discovery, and always challenge yourself to try new things.” - Nate Berkus

Should You Feel Motivated About Learning To be A Bot Developer?

Internet bots are regularly in the news today. The reason is that they can complete repetitive simple tasks more quickly and efficiently than human beings and with less errors. This allows the people who wrote the software script or contracted someone else to do it for them to have time to take on tasks that have a higher return for the time saved.

It seems pretty straightforward, right? It starts to get interesting when you realize that bots can even help employers hire freelancers. Martin Bryant of blog has written Tara the chatbot hires freelancers so you don’t have to which you can read here.

I don’t know whether you know it or not but Wikipedia uses editing bots to help look after their massive amounts of articles and data. It is true! You can read about it here.

It is only when you start to think about the possible applications that bots can be used for that you realize the enormity of the opportunities for freelancers who are motivated to learn this new skill where they can see that their current skills set is starting to be less relevant. Here is a list of the bot developer jobs that are on Upwork here and on Freelancer here. This is one of the courses for chatbot developers on Udemy here. This is not an affiliate link.

I notice that Programming the Microsoft Bot Framework: A Multiplatform Approach to Building Chatbots by Joe Mayo is due out on November 9th. 2017 is taking pre-orders. You can preview it here. This is not an affiliate link.

Productivity Tip Of The Week

Procrastination Can Be Productivity’s Worst Enemy
Procrastination can be a killer for productivity. It is very easy to put off items that are on your ToDoList that you know you must do, but they appear too hard and you put them off. This email letter was in my too hard basket for almost two years before I started it. Quite often the items that you are putting off are very important, but they require more planning and application to produce a good result.

In The Freelancer’s Bible on page 338 Sara Horowitz’s lists 10 Procrastination Busters. My clear favourite is breaking items that have been too hard to tackle all at once down into parts and tackling them one part per day. This quote from Max Brooks is right on the money:

“If you believe you can accomplish everything by “cramming” at the eleventh hour, by all means, don’t lift a finger now. But you may think twice about beginning to build your ark once it has already started raining.”

The above quote was one of 65 collected by Marelisa Fabrega for her blog post 65 Procrastination quotes that will shift you into action mode that appears in her blog which you can read here.

If you prefer more than quotes, but action steps that you can take Matt Benfield’s Blog post 10 ways to overcome procrastination as a freelancer which you can read here.

Work-Life Balance Tip of the Week

Do You Understand How To Moonlight As A Freelancer?
Laura Shin from the Forbes Magazine wrote the article From Full-Time To Freelance: How To Make The Leap which you can read here. Laura is very much on top of the issue of freelancing and being prepared before you try going out as a full-time freelancer. You will find a number of articles about freelancing at the end of this particular article by Laura.

However, when you signed up for this newsletter you gained access to some listicle (articles in a list format) of the questions you should ask yourself and professionals from whom you should seek advice. It is important when you are moonlighting that you understand the taxation impact on your overall situation including your income from your day role in a 9 to 5 job.

There would be two professionals that I would put on your ToDoList before embarking on your moonlighting plan, they are your tax accountant and financial planner. I say this because it is very easy to make mistakes that can cost you a lot in after-tax income which is what most people start moonlighting for. The timing of this article is appropriate because the end of the taxation year which is the calendar year is quickly approaching for the United States.

The Freelancers Union blog has two posts about the taxation and freelancers that I have found. Jonathan Medows has written 7 tax tips for first-time freelancers which you can read here. The Freelancers Union has also produced a Tax Guide which can be accessed here.

I am aware that I have readers of this newsletter from a number of countries and my strong advice to you is to not rely on general advice articles other than as background research before seeking personal professional advice from a taxation accountant and a financial planner to get your overall strategy right.

It is the bottom line net after-tax income result that will help your overall budget. Agree?

Financial Tip Of The Week

Freelancers, The Future Of Work and Finance
In this newsletter we talked about how cybersecurity offered freelancers a great opportunity to develop skill sets that are going to be highly in demand. One particular area that is going to see enormous growth is in the area of data protection officers for Small and Medium Enterprises globally and this is why explained in this article here.

The European Union General Data Protection Regulation which comes into force on 25/5/2018 is driving this demand for reform and change. It is a global reform that is going to require the trading partners of the European Union that deal with the identities of European Union citizens to comply with the law. Some countries have not realized this yet, but they will and this is the reason here. This opportunity is worthy of your research.

By way of disclosure, I own and operate this cyber security website and I am an affiliate of IT Governance Limited in the United Kingdom which is the leading global supplier, in my opinion, of the training for Data Protection Officers.

In this newsletter here I said that I would explain how an Amazon Associates website is built, mistakes and all so that you can learn from mistakes. This is where we are up to:

There are basically three ways that you can build a website to become an Amazon Associate to generate some net- income to assist your family budget, they are:

  • Get someone to build it for you and pay them to do it. The goal is that the income will exceed the costs.
  • Build it totally yourself based on your research of a niche and using a platform to follow the steps. The goal is that it will lessen your costs and the platform will help you succeed and the income will exceed the costs.
  • Use a combination of the above with the assistance of a virtual assistant and outsourcing where you have gaps in your technical knowledge. The goal is that is that you will get the website built quickly and the technical assistance will help you succeed and the income will exceed the costs.

This is where the first project is up to based on the third option:
I have chosen the domain name for the Australian Amazon websites. The names that I chose were, and The reason that I chose these domain names is that Amazon Prime now has about 80 million members. It is true! See here. This is a list of the benefits that Amazon Prime membership brings here. Most freelancers will be familiar with what a domain name is, but for new freelancers, this is an explanation here.
As I said at the start I will tell you about this project, costs, mistakes and all. The cost of the related business name, Prime Benefits, registered with Australian Securities and Investment Commission for one year was A$35.00. The cost of the domain names was A$12.00 each per year with Net Registry. The project will be updated each week.

Freelancers And Cyber Security

We have gained approval from Robert Siciliano to bring you extracts from his books related to cyber security for freelancers. Robert Siciliano is an identity theft expert and consultant. He also gives self defense and personal safety seminars. Robert provides safety and identity theft fraud prevention tips and advice on multimedia channels in the United States. We have his approval to bring you weekly extracts from his books:

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