5 Tips to Help You Cope With More Freelance Work
Are you getting more freelance work than you can handle, and don’t know exactly how to deal with it? Well, you’re not alone in your dilemma.
Rowan Martin is a UK based freelance writer who had to turn clients away last month because she was overbooked. Although remote work has grown 91% in the last decade in the US alone, it has gained wider global attention since COVID-19 which has cost the US economy over 40 million jobs.
As a result, most displaced employees are looking for remote work and other online jobs to do. Interestingly, some companies are also engaging more freelancers. FlexJobs reported a 24% increase in available freelance jobs on its platform between March and April.
Experienced freelancers are better positioned to fill these roles. According to the Remote Work Report, 42% of people who are 100% remote have been working remotely for over 5 years, 28% for 3 to 5 years, and 19% for 1 to 2 years.
If you fall into this category and are wondering how to cope with increasing workload due to COVID-19, here are five (5) practical tips to help.
5 Practical Tips to Help You Cope With More Freelance Work
- Say No…
You: Say what?
Me: Yes. Say no, thanks.
Here’s the point. Whereas taking more work may translate to more income, it could become your last business with a client if you do a poor job due to stress or burnout from overwork.
However, you interrupted me. I was actually going to type “Say no, not at the moment.” That’s if your calendar might be free to accommodate more work in the nearest future. In that case, let them know you’re fully booked, and ask if you can add them to your waiting list.
If however, you’re fully booked and not likely to be free anytime soon, say no, thanks. You can recommend another freelancer who might be a good match. This way you won’t bite more than you can chew. Plus, the fact that you’re booked for months tells clients that you must be good, and some won’t mind the wait.
- Say Yes
Alternatively, you may take the job, then request ample time to deliver. Most clients will agree to a flexible deadline. However, if they don’t, let it go, or let it go to someone you know can deliver.
Only outsource work to trusted freelancers who can deliver similar or even better results than you. Send them a short contract spelling out fees, deliverables, and deadlines. Give them a detailed brief, and shorter deadlines but enough time to complete tasks. Check on them regularly to ensure they’re working.
Finally, make sure to personally go over their work before delivering it to your client. If they have ghostwritten a blog post for you, ensure to proofread and edit where necessary before submitting to the client.
- Plan Your Day
You can only achieve so much in 24 hours. Without a plan, you may achieve little or nothing. Lack of planning could be the reason why you’re constantly stressed, overworked, and burned out.
With a plan, you can drastically reduce the time required to finish a task, especially goal-based plans. This can help you to quickly complete tasks at hand and make room to accommodate extra freelance work.
Starting a morning routine and a daily to-do list can boost your overall productivity levels. You can create handwritten to-do lists or use apps like ToDoist, Habitica, Tick Tick, Things, etc. They will save you time and stress, and help you earn more freelance income.
- Work on Your Work Ethics
A good work ethic will help you achieve more as a freelancer. It is so important when working remotely and unsupervised. Habitual missed deadlines, for instance, is a good indicator of poor work ethic.
According to Georgia Piedmont College, the ten core work ethic traits include:
- organizational skills,
- respect, and
With these in place, you can complete tasks on time and have room for more work.
- Work Smarter, Automate
A recent study by Wakefield Research shows that 95% of top business leaders now favor remote work, with 61% planning to increase investment in remote work enabling technology to improve efficiency, productivity, and service delivery.
You should do the same.
Study your work routine, and identify your top time wasters. Invest in technology that automates tasks and simplifies your work. For instance, if you’re a virtual assistant for a dropshipper, you’ll find that using a dropshipping automation tool like Oberlo can save you hours you’ll otherwise spend manually importing products from AliExpress into a Shopify store.
I have been able to save hours of work by simply automating tasks like prospecting for clients, giving me time to take on more client work.
As more businesses realize the importance of remote work, more and more will turn to freelance talent for help. By implementing these tips you can increase your ability to handle the increasing workload, earning you more income, clout, and authority in the process.
Just remember to:
- Say no (Not at the moment)
- Say yes
- Plan your day
- Work on your work ethics, and
- Work smarter