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Just Graduated? Here’s How To Get Started As A Freelancer!

Estimated reading time: 3 mins

There are millions of freelancers across the globe, all of whom chose the freelance life for one reason: freedom. Being a freelancer gives you the freedom to work from anywhere at any time, making it easier to fit your work around your lifestyle and other commitments. Freelancing can be a fantastic career choice; there’s no doubt about that. However, most freelancers tend to have years of experience behind them, which is what makes working in a freelance capacity easier. As a recent graduate, the chances are that you have little to no experience working in ‘the real world’, which means being successful as a freelancer can be more complicated. That being said, it’s not impossible to successfully work in a freelance capacity as a graduate who’s never worked in the industry before, it’s just a case of knowing how to go about it, that’s all.

To secure your future as a freelancer, you will need to be willing to put in the time and work extra hard. It is possible to succeed in the freelance industry as a graduate, but it will just be that little bit harder to do, that’s all. The information below should help to make succeeding as a graduate freelancer easier, regardless of what area you want to freelance in.

Be willing to continue to learn

You might have a degree, but that doesn’t mean your learning is done, far from it. All the most successful freelancers are willing to continue to learn because that’s what you need to do to succeed, especially if you are new to the industry. The fact is that there are new concepts, technologies, and types of software being launched every day, which is why it’s so vital to be dedicated to your learning. Read all the latest articles on your niche, watch YouTube videos, tune into webinars – do whatever you can to stay up to date with all the latest industry information.

Intern

As a recent graduate, you lack experience, which can be a turnoff for potential clients. That’s why it’s vital that you find ways to build your experience up as much as possible. One of the best ways to do that is to find companies within your chosen niche to intern at – aim to complete as many internships as possible. Another option could be shadowing industry professionals within the industry of your choice. Say, for example, you want to be a freelance journalist, organize to shadow a professional journalist for your local paper or a local magazine and learn more about how professional journalists work. The more experience you can get, the better.  

Get yourself organised

The number one reason that people fail to work effectively in a freelance capacity is because of a lack of organisation. To be a successful freelancer, it’s vital that you are organised about how you work. To make staying organized easier, utilise to-do lists, invest in all the right stationery, from an organiser and notepads to a whiteboard for planning and files for keeping documents safe, it’s vital to ensure you have all of the stationery that you need to work in an organised manner. You may also find that certain apps, such as Todist, Be Focused, and Evernote, can help to make staying organised easier.

Don’t undersell yourself

Last but not least, whatever you do, don’t undersell yourself. You may think that by setting cheap rates you will be more likely to succeed, but that doesn’t tend to be the case. Cheap rates scream unqualified and inexperienced, which isn’t an impression that you want to make. Aim to set your prices in the medium range, so that they aren’t too pricey or too cheap. Honestly, by doing so, you will be more likely to succeed.

There you have it, a guide to getting started as a freelancer after recently graduating from university.

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About the author /


Simon is a creative and passionate business leader dedicated to having fun in the pursuit of high performance and personal development. He is co-founder of Applied Change, a Business Change consultancy based in the UK. Simon is also an Ambassador for Gloucestershire business. Simon is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Professional Development.

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