Be Your Own Boss Today: 5 Ways To Find Projects As A Freelancer

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Freelancing in the Philippines, especially after years of working for a regular salary, can be quite a refreshing and liberating experience. After all, it gets rid of nearly all of your daily work annoyances: the tiring daily commutes, the office politics, the gossip mongering co-workers, and so on. Moreover, as a freelancer, you’re more in control of your own schedule and time, allowing you to truly work at your own pace. All this leaves you a lot more free time to relax and to enjoy things with your loved ones. 

That being said, freelancing does have its fair share of challenges, and these include finding new projects to do after you’ve finished your previous assignments. It can be tough to do so, moreso if you’ve only started freelancing and your name hasn’t quite circulated the freelancing market yet. This could prove to be quite stressful. After all, your income relies on you finding a steady supply of projects to pay the bills with. 

Thankfully, there are ways to get through this tough challenge. To help you get started, we’re listing some tried-and-tested ways to find projects as a freelancing professional. 

Join One Of The Many Online Freelance Platforms 

Just like how you can find listings for literally everything online—from second-hand furniture and toys to sweet delicacies and pieces of art—so too can you find freelancing platforms that can either connect you to someone in need of your skills, or give you a list of projects to choose from. Just make sure to pick a reputable Filipino freelance platform because otherwise, you may find yourself inundated with bogus projects or fraudulent job requests. 

Do Temporary Pro-Bono Or Volunteer Work 

If you’ve just started out and you literally have no experience or network of contacts to fall back on, then one thing you can try out in a limited fashion is to do pro-bono work—essentially working for free. While this means zero—or in fact negative—income, especially if your type of work involves a lot of time and hard work, you are getting your name out there, and in a way that can really attract new clients and projects if you do an absolutely stellar job. 

One way to ensure that you’ll put out your best is to offer your services to an establishment or organization that you’re truly passionate about, ideally one that also needs help from volunteers and good samaritans. It can be your local community paper or even a charity organization such as an orphanage or an animal shelter. If you do an absolutely bang-up job of it, not only will you have something to put in your portfolio, but the people you worked for will strongly consider working with you again in the future for paid engagements. They could even set you up with people in their network who can provide you projects in the future. 

Promote Yourself On Social Media 

Another way to get new projects is to put yourself out there on social media. Yes, we Filipinos have that tendency to shy away from promoting ourselves, but self-promotion is one of the main features of social media, and as such, it’d be such a waste not to take advantage of it! Consider promoting your work using an account that is separate from your personal one, though. You don’t want your prospective employer to have to sift through all of your personal posts just to see what you’re capable of. 

Be Proactive In Making New Connections 

Just as you have to get over your shyness when it comes to promoting yourself online, you also have to do the same thing offline—that is, you shouldn’t be afraid of being proactive during networking events to make connections. You don’t need to completely change your personality and become an overbearing, self-aggrandizing nag; rather you just need to be more assertive in making connections and telling people about what you do and what you’re capable of. 

Hand out more business cards, and be more comfortable bringing up your work or talents when the conversation calls for it. Developing positive relationships with everyone you meet, even if it may not seem that it’ll benefit you in the long or short term, can help expand your professional network and put your name in the forefront of people’s minds. 

Work On Your Portfolio, And Make It As Professional As You Can 

Finally, fix up your portfolio, and make it look as best as you possibly can. Your portfolio should not only be a compilation of your best work, it should also truly exemplify what you’re capable of as a freelancer. It should also be easy to understand, browse through, and appreciate. This will highlight your consideration and attention to detail when it comes to your client’s needs. After all, it’s the document that can sometimes tip the scales to your favor, especially when you’re lacking experience or clout in the freelancing world. 

When You Build Yourself Up As A Great Freelancer, The Projects Will Come 

Freelancing is a liberating experience for anyone who’s been worn down by the regular 9-to-5 desk jockey position. However, those who just starting out may experience a drought of new projects to work on, which can be an unbearable source of stress. If you find yourself in the same plight, then take into consideration the tips listed above. Hopefully, you’ll be able to attract your own share of projects very soon. Good luck, freelancer!

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