Do I have what it takes? That’s a question I find myself asking a lot. As I’m taking a leap of faith and whole heartedly pursuing my dream of freelance, I’m reminding myself that it won’t just happen to me. So I’ve decided to read Creative, Inc. – The Ultimate Guide to Running a Successful Freelance Business by two amazing women, Meg Mateo Ilasco and Joy Deangdeelert Cho. And for some accountability, I’ll be blogging my way through it.
In the first chapter Meg & Joy layout the nine qualities of a successful freelancer, let’s see how I fair:
1. Strong Business Sense – “The ones who flex their business muscle become the most identifiable and successful.”
I’m not the most awesome planner and organizer, but I have a good broad sense of all the things that need done to run a business. I have the motivation and resourcefulness to keep a tight schedule and structure on the days I work from home. (I’m only two weeks into my new work schedule, but so far I’ve been good).
2. A Love For Your Art – “One thing is certain, you have to be passionate about what you do.”
Check. I get excited to wake up and get to work designing, blogging and gathering inspiration.
3. Curiosity – “Curiosity keeps your mind primed as a creative tool, keeps you open to new ways of working and looking at things.”
I totally agree that this is such an important trait for a designer and especially a freelancer. Design is so much more than a logo just looking good, but it has to connect with people and tell a story about the company. And without cultural references, this is hard to do.
4. Confidence and a Strong Vision – “You must have confidence to suggest your own ideas and bring your voice into the conversation.”
Confidence may be one of my weaknesses as I start this journey. I need to build self-confidence that I am very capable designer who has a unique voice. While I do have confidence in sharing my ideas and visions with clients, I get nervous once the first proof design is handed over to the client.
5. Good Listening and Observation Skills – “To stay in business, you’ll need to please your client before pleasing yourself.”
I do believe that customer is king and luckily I’ve had the chance to work with some truly amazing clients who have visions and styles that mesh well with mine. But through listening and observing it’s possible to create work that will satisfy both the client and build a trusting relationship.
Traits 6-9 to come later in the week….