Weekly Newsletter for The Freelancers: Here is the latest newsletter of the week starting on 13th May 2019.
Starting out as a freelancer without a plan is not a good idea. There, I have said it! It needed to be said so that there is no misunderstanding about deciding to become a freelancer.
There are powerful trends that are at play here which are beyond individuals. They are corporate trends to maximize corporate profitability by cutting costs.
That is not a surprise to most employees! Elaine Pofeldt has written The Powerful Trend That Will Soon Make the Freelance Life Easier for Forbes Magazine which can be read here.
The result of these trends can be seen where technological changes in industries are well underway and thousands of workers are going to be made redundant.
Industries are not making a secret of this, as a recent announcement by the National Australia Bank Limited shows. You can read about this here.
This comment from Andy Haldane, The Chief Economist at the Bank of England, is right on the money:
"This is the dark side of technological revolutions and that dark side has always been there," Haldane added. "That hollowing out is going to be potentially on a much greater scale in the future, when we have machines both thinking and doing — replacing both the cognitive and the technical skills of humans."
You can read more about this article on www.lifeboat.com blog by clicking here.
However, what they are not telling you is that they are still going to need access to top talented workers with specialized skills. Many of these workers will be freelancers.
In fact, there is now a freelancing platform called www.toptal.com which aims to provide access to the top 3% of freelancing talent. If you have the skills to make yourself one of the top talented freelancers, this is a wonderful opportunity for you from a work-life balance perspective.
Most of us do not have the skills or talent to be in the top 3% and that is why it is more important to have a plan.
In Sara Horowitz and Toni Sciarra Poynter in The Freelancer's Bible, Chapter 1 titled Seven Start-Up Steps begins with the words "Fire, ready, aim".
My strong advice is not to be one of those freelancers, even if you are a top-talent freelancer, but to read Sara and Toni's book from cover to cover then read it again, then make a plan!
"The biggest risk is not taking any risk... In a world that changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks."– Mark Zuckerberg
When you start out freelancing, or are even an experienced freelancer, there are problems at every corner on the journey to building a fair and reasonable income and a successful career.
It is necessary to build a positivity circuit in your thinking so that you do not become overwhelmed with negativity. If negativity emerges in your thinking it can sap you of the energy needed to get on with the job of being creative.
Loretta Breuning has identified this issue and how to overcome it. Loretta has written How To Train Your Brain To Go Positive Instead Of Negative and it appears in the Forbes magazine which you can read here.
For those of you that like action plans and the steps to take, Christina Larmer has put together a list for you entitled 10 steps to thinking positive which appear on the Bodyandsoul.com.au website. You can read Christina's article here.
Now and then classic books that span generations come along that inspire and help millions of people. This book by Napoleon Hill: Success Through A Positive Mental Attitude is one such book and can be obtained by clicking on the icon below:
This quote from Napoleon Hill is right on the money for freelancers:
"All the breaks you need in life wait within your imagination. Imagination is the workshop of your mind, capable of turning mind energy into accomplishment and wealth."
For freelancers and entrepreneurs, the 50/30/20 rule can provide a foundation on which to build your finances.
This plan was featured by Elizabeth Warren and Amelia Warren Tyagi in their book All Your Worth: The Ultimate Lifetime Money Plan. The underlying point is that your finances, as freelancers, are not as simple as being an employee.
You have to budget not only for income but expenses as well, including taxes. On top of this, you will find the need to smooth your income between the feast and famine.
Here is Chris Enns' article 5 things every variable income earner should know which appears in Thedumblittleman.com blog. You can read here here.
Have you ever said to yourself "I should have known better", "If only I had known” or perhaps, the best of all, "How stupid can I get?" There is a common element in these statements and that is regret for not being able to foresee events from your current experience.
As a freelancer, it is important that you do foresee events that can harm you, your family, finances or career. It is more important for you as a freelancer than if you are a 9 to 5 employee because a wrong decision impacts on you, your family, finances, and career much more.
That is why freelancers need to read about the experiences of other freelancers who have traveled the road before you. It is why I am a strong advocate of being a member of the Freelancers Union, see here.
This is because their members will share their knowledge with you and you can learn from their experiences. This is far better than learning from your mistakes.
Lori Bumgarner has written 10 Lessons from 10 years of freelancing for the Freelancers Union blog which you can read here.
In the introduction to the article, Lori says "I hope these lessons will encourage those who are thinking about starting their own thing, are new to freelancing, or have faced some common struggles". Thank you, Lori!
This quote about learning from the experience of others has a lot of wisdom:
"We don't have to waste our time learning how to make pastry when we can use grandma's recipes."– Orson De Witt, (Earth Won't Miss You)
Next to applying for a home loan when you are a freelancer, applying to rent an apartment can be a financial problem.
The reason is that you do not have an employer that the landlord or the real estate agent can telephone to confirm your employment or income.
It is a part of doing their due diligence to ensure that you are not a future problem renter who cannot pay the rent. Imagine that you were in the position of the landlord; you would do the same and so would I.
Carrie Smith has written Self-Employed? Here's How to Get Your Apartment Application Approved for Wisebread.com and you can read her article here.
Erin Bylander has told the story about a new graphic designer freelancer in Some Issues can Make Renting Tricky - but not Impossible which he has written for the Washington Post. You can read it here.
For freelancers starting out, and people on low to moderate income, renting is a serious social issue which is what prompted Charles Morris to write his Kindle eBook Rent Apartment: The Complete Guide to Low Rent Apartments, Renting Houses and More which you can look inside of by clicking here or by clicking on the image below:
We are constantly researching for news articles and videos on skills development and inspiration for freelancers.
Each week we have decided to bring you the links to what we consider are the top three articles or videos.
Here they are for this week (click on the article description):
There are now 5,000 skills in 90 categories that the digital economy can offer, according to Upworks 4th quarter 2018 Skills Index which you can read here.
Hadoop is now number one! If you wonder what Hadoop is (like me!) this link explains it here.
Articles now on
our website that are relevant are listed here:
The latest one is here:
The weekly AWS news video link to acloud.guru is here. They are the leading trainers globally for AWS freelancers. I notice on their website that they now have trained 850,000+ engineers with their online courses. Not bad for an Australian start up!
You can read their very impressive story from www.businessnewsaus.com.au by clicking here.
As discussed in previous newsletters we are focussing on the niche website in the future because it is producing better results i.e. sales.
Here is a recent article: Best garage workbench of 2019. Top 5 recommended. There have been 44 sales in the past month due to the keyword research and skills of Mamun, my virtual assistant.
We have decided to expand our search for appropriate articles for freelancers about cybersecurity. This week we have found an interesting article from the Australian Government Department: Australian Cybercrime Online Reporting Network entitled Attacks on computer systems (click on the link to read the article)
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 runs a cyber security and fraud prevention website which you can see here.
Image Source: ROBERT SICILIANO