Starting your career as a freelancer, you must have thought about all the benefits that come with your new profession. Working from a preferred location without having to ‘punch in’, for instance. You will finally more control over our work-life balance. However, most of us get carried away with this flexibility and miss the chance to make the most of our careers. While anybody can make a minimum income from a freelance career, in order to make a living out of it, you will need a lot of discipline and intrinsic motivation.
As you are your own boss, the most lucrative thing you can invest in your career is your time. Although managing your time efficiently might seem to be difficult initially, once you understand the importance of time management, your efforts will soon pay off. The additional free time you will gain after completing your daily tasks will help you lower your stress and improve your focus. This ultimately improves various aspects of your life. So, if you are struggling to manage your time, the below five reasons suggesting the importance of time management for a freelancer will help you utilise every single minute of your day wisely.
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1. Improve Your Workflow
Freelancers need to take care of multiple projects at one time, a substantial amount of hours is required to meet deadlines. To help juggle the work, prioritise and divide adequate time for each project. This is essential for the successful completion of all projects. By managing your time, you can understand where you have lost time and can find ways to keep yourself away from distraction. No matter whether you are working on a big project or a small project, time management is an indispensable part of your freelance profession. The best way to increase your productivity is to manage your time with strategic planning. As your productivity increases, you can finish your projects with a better stride allowing yourself enough time to undertake additional projects. This will both streamline your workflow and increase your earnings.
2. Avoid Unnecessary Distractions
Most of us find it tempting to push the work aside until the last minute. With the mobile phone constantly buzzing with notifications from WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, one cannot resist becoming distracted from work. Although these distractions provide temporary relief, they can cause a major delay in your work, compromising the quality of a project. While there are a number of ways to avoid procrastination during your work schedule, proper management of time is an ideal way to overcome it. By managing your time efficiently, you can avoid unnecessary delays in your work. Once you become aware of the pace at which the time is running, you will inevitably be more cautious about your time management.
3. Bypass Multi-tasking
A study by American Phycological Association claims that multitasking results in a 40 per cent drop in the overall productivity of an individual. While most of the freelancers work on more than one project at a time, multitasking seems to be an efficient way of executing various projects within a short time span. However, multitasking actually results in projects taking more time to complete with a higher risk for errors. A dedicated amount of time and effort plays a vital role in any successful project. Once a freelancer learns the art of effective time management, they are less likely to multi-task. Thus, gradually improving the quality of work.
4. Choose Your Clients Wisely
At some point in time, every freelancer comes across a client who is unwilling to pay an invoice. Such clients will waste time by keeping freelancers distracted with unnecessary emails or calls. The ideal way to deal with such clients is to track each moment spent with them and charge them accordingly. However, these types of clients generally pay less than the average one. As you start taking notes of your time invested in pointless demands, you will spot the clients that are a liability. Make a list of the clients you want to continue with and which clients need to be dropped.
5. Make Good Financial Decisions
Freelancers are generally unaware of the amount of time required for a particular project. In such cases, there are high chances of underquoting or charging a lower amount of money. Receiving a lower amount for a task might lead to demotivation. Moreover, it is also likely to affect the quality of your work and relationship with the client. Although the exact time required cannot be estimated accurately, proper experience and understanding will help you realise your worth. An ideal way to make sure you do not incur further financial losses is to use time tracking tools for your business. By comparing the amount of time spent and the total income earned for each project, you can make better estimates for your future assignments.
In a Nutshell
As Benjamin Franklin rightly said, “time is money”. To become a successful freelancer it is essential to commence your own system and follow it strictly. Apart from increasing your business revenues, time used wisely will help you establish reliable and honest professional relationships. In addition, the extra time can be used for your personal well-being.
About the author:
Anna Clarke is the owner of the online writing company 15 Writers. She is a successful entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience in both freelancing and academic writing industries. Anna specialises in Business, Economics, Finance, Marketing and Management.