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Organizing Oneself for Freelancer Jobs

Updated on June 30, 2020
CopywriterMartinWensley profile image

I’m still struggling to find a high-paying gig or a stellar client that allows me to dedicate myself to freelancing as my main income source


Basic Organizational Processes for Freelancers

I hope that this article is as usable for freelancers of any niche or industry as I was able to make it.

Four topics of daily freelance work that I included in this article:

  • Adapting to the freelancer workday with sound time management
  • Discovering what you’ll need to do to achieve your goals
  • Developing a list of processes and tasks that you need to do
  • Measuring everything that can be measured, at all levels of the work

Daily working time should be used to do tasks that have the highest potential of paying with as little complexity as possible.

Good use of Daily Work Time


Daily working time should be used to do tasks that have the highest potential of paying with as little complexity as possible.

Most of my workday’s time I use it for content-related tasks. Another important part of my workday is publishing that content. The other big chunk of time I use is when I perform tasks to hustle my content.

In an ideal world, I’ll live to write bare-bones content only and to dispatch those documents to my clients and occasional customers. My day would be split between writing and interacting with clients.

But I’m far from such a simple workday yet. I’m building myself up as a freelancing business entity, and that takes considerable hard work.

To become someone in the freelancer marketplaces, if one doesn’t have a verifiable experience or someone to recommend oneself, is very hard.

One has to master dozens of little things that go into creating convincing, accessible proof of one’s capabilities as a freelancer. Things that someone who is already established in his or her niche doesn’t need to pursue.

Focus on Freelancing and Keep Busy


Freelancing at home is a radical paradigm shift from common work. It has great potential for breeding procrastination and work-related sloth.

Don’t procrastinate. If you set yourself a schedule with daily things to do, and then you don’t do them, you’re falling prey to sloth.

At the basic level, one must decide how many hours one is willing to put into freelance work per day.

If you are in the discovery phase, and still building your list of processes and tasks, then strive to complete all the hours of daily work you decided to do.

Work the hours, even if it seems that you ran out of things to do. If you don’t know what to work on, think of something fast and act.

It’s possible that doing this you’ll discover more and more tasks that your freelancing will need, that you haven’t entered into your list yet.

Do This Before Using Work Calendars


Starting from a high-paying low-complexity ideal one must figure what additional things one needs to do to get gigs, without adding unnecessary complexity.

I’m the kind of person that requires a calendar with the tasks for the day laid out waiting to be completed. When I started freelancing I decided to freelance part-time.

Based on a six hours workday I did the best I could to distribute those six hours among the tasks I thought I’d need to generate an income from freelancing.

I created a list of daily tasks and then estimated how much of each per day I would need.

Months later, when faced with an ever-growing list of backlogged tasks, I knew I was doing something wrong.

In my case, there was a mismatch between what I thought I needed to do to work as a freelancer, versus what I did.

If you are starting, or if you are having problems with your day-to-day work schedule I recommend using a calendar where you fill in the tasks for the day, but don’t do as I did.

At first, don’t schematize your work or business with tasks that you think you’ll need. Instead, I recommend you to do this.

  1. Make a list of the most basic processes that make up your work, business or service
  2. Break down each of the processes into the actual basic tasks
  3. Work for one month doing only what needs to be done to achieve your monthly business goals, using your list of tasks
  4. Use a stopwatch or something similar, to record how much time per day you dedicate to each task
  5. Make a list of the tasks you are carrying out each day, and when you finish doing each, write down how much time you used that day to perform it.
  6. Add new tasks to the list, as soon as you need to begin doing them, and measure your time doing them like the others.

At the end of the month, you are going to see a long list of very different tasks you performed all through the month towards your business goals.

You will notice that you did a lot of x tasks and not so much of y tasks.

The tasks you didn’t dedicate much time to may, or may not, be the gaps that you need to work on.

After several months doing this, you’ll have a list of tasks you need to do daily to do your freelance work.

If they are a lot, say, a dozen or more different tasks, group them by processes again.

The new list of processes that you'll end up with now might be a very different thing from the one with which you started, several months before.

You need to group them by processes for them to be more manageable and fit in a work calendar.

Continually Monitor and Evolve Your Measuring Tactics


To know what is working and what is not, you need to have a good measuring plan with tactics to measure everything that can be measured involving your work or business.

If you, for your freelance work, use services and products of which the performance is measurable like the list below, then it’s silly not to measure everything you can measure, from day one.

  • Emails: can be tracked to know if they are opened and for other metrics
  • Freelancer site: a lot, and I mean A LOT, of stuff, can be measured when using a website to market your freelancing work
  • Social media: accounts, profiles, and pages: they can be measured for many metrics, like websites
  • Third-Party venues: they may shine a different light on one’s work and their unique metrics give powerful insights

These are just generic, measurable channels that a freelancer may use in her or his day to day work.

I think one of the first things one has to consider when leveraging a community, product or service for freelance work, should be to know if it’s measurable.

If the said channel is measurable one must learn how, and how one is going to take advantage of that.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2020 Martin Wensley


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