I was reading in the NY Times magazine section this past Sunday about freelancers.
What struck me was how so many people are freelancing because they've been laid off and how, if they could, they would prefer to have a "real" full time job.
Well... if you want to be a successful freelancer... it's a full time job.
What are the traits of a successful freelancer you might ask...
First... you have to be disciplined.
I start my day working promptly at the same time every day. My clients know that when they call me I can respond to their requests right away.
Next... you have to promote yourself via phone and internet every single day.
You have to put yourself in your client's place and treat your clients how YOU want to be treated... no surprises, bring projects in on budget, be easy to work with.
You have to commit yourself and buy the necessary software to keep up with the industry.
Don't look at this as something to "tide you over" until something "better" comes along.... freelancing is a great way of making a living and a wonderful lifestyle.... if you can take the occasional stress of a "feast and famine" work schedule.
Bottom line... Being a freelancer is a profession that demands creativity and people skills. You can be the best designer in the world, but if you are difficult to work with, no one will give you the time of day or more importantly a second job. Be professional. Act professional. Deliver the highest caliber work and you will succeed. Remember... your job is to help people. They have a problem, you have the solution.