How to Get them to Hire You!!!


We all want to be hired, but we also want the right job.  Your job is to get the client to hire you to do work for them.  You want to make sure the job is a good match for you and you are a good match for the client.  There may be times you think you are right for a job with a client, but they don’t see it that way.  But in the process, they may feel you are a good match for another project they have going on.  If so, you still get a job.

I recently applied for a job and was invited to interview for the job.  During the interview process we found out I wasn’t the right person for the job I applied for, but ended up getting another job because of the contact.  The result of any contact you have is to get a job, whether it is the job you applied for, a better job for you, or even a referral.

If a contact doesn’t have a job for you, then try to get a referral so you can still work on getting work.  Also, once you have started working for a client you want to see if they have work for you, especially if they are happy with the work you have provided for them.  I was communicating with one of my clients today about a project I had worked on for him.  He needed to change what I was working on.  During the conversation I asked he let others know about what I was able to do when he ran into people who talked about needing a writer, proofreader and/or editor.  I one time did get a job through oDesk because someone was happy with the work I did.  This is one of the best ways to build your business.

I have also had clients continue to give me work because they liked what I did.  Whether I did the complete job or they were in a pinch and needed help.  They may also have me help them when other things come up.

You also need to keep applying for jobs.  There may be times you won’t work as hard as other days to keep getting new work.  The first example I shared with you in this article was because I was still applying for work.  I was looking for more work to add to my workload.  Come to find out, for the work I ended up getting, I can add to what I am able to do.  If they like the batch I end up doing for them, there will be more work for me.

But most important when doing this, make sure you know your skills and are willing to do what they need.  You don’t want to do something and then not be able to do to because you don’t have the skills, the time or the want to do it.

So keep going after work, it will make all the difference in your workload.  Don’t wait until you don’t have any work to start looking.

 

Invoicing with oDesk…


Invoicing with oDesk is quite easy.  When it comes to hourly work, oDesk has software that will track the amount of time you work for the jobs that are hourly.  Then at the end of the week they remind you to check your time, which you should be doing anyways.  This will show you the amount of time it shows you have worked.  Then the client is asked to check this time to agree or disagree with what they see.  Then they invoice the client who will then pay the amount.  You will receive the amount 1 1/2 weeks after the end of the week.

This is a great way to keep the number of steps you have to do limited.  You just have to make sure you pick the right client to bill when you go to work.  You want to make sure you are careful as when you open the software it will have you ready to log in to the last client you billed hours to.

If you are working on a fixed price project, they will pay you once they feel they want to.  Just because a job is due on a certain day doesn’t mean they will pay you on that day, if they pay you at all.  So, it is best you look at their feedback from other contractors and payment history to see if this is the option you should consider, especially as you are beginning.

If you are freelancing and not using any type of company, but doing it on your own, you need to find a way to invoice that works for you.  Each of your clients will have their own way and/or timetable they work best with.  I know one person who wants an invoice weekly while I have others who say it doesn’t matter, as long as they know when I will be doing it.  So, those clients I usually invoice once a month, unless it is a really big project.

If you invoice on your own you need to have something set up that you use to help you know who has paid, when and for what.  I now use a spreadsheet that tracks my customers I invoice on my own.  I have set it up to include a number I give each client and then started with 1 and the invoice numbers will go up. Then on another worksheet I keep track of when the invoice was sent, when it was paid and if it was paid by PayPal, what the amount of the fees I will be paying as well.  I highlight the invoices that haven’t been paid, then I un-highlight them when they are paid.  Since this is done in Excel it is easy to do.  This helps me know who I need to follow-up with on unpaid invoices.  The amount of time they have to pay will vary if the contract we have stipulates the amount of time they will take to pay or not.  If it doesn’t, then I put in my date for it.

If you want a sample of what I use let me know and I will be happy to send it to you.

My Goals for 2013…


In my last post you will remember that I talked about things we need to update as a freelancer.  I have to say my goals for 2013 is one thing I haven’t done.  Why, you may ask?  Because I haven’t made them a priority, which is wrong.

Goals are important in helping move your business forward and making sure you stay focused what is important for you and your business.  If you haven’t had goals for your business before, then don’t feel you need to have a lot of them.  It is o.k. to start with a few and then add more as you go along.

What are some things you should include in your goals?

  • How much you want to make
  • Your clients – how many you want, your workload, schedule, etc.
  • Professional Development
  • Type of work you will do

Remember, you are in charge, so don’t be afraid to make the goals work for you.  Having somewhere to start is important to get started.

Getting and Staying Motivated…


As a freelancer, just like anything else, getting and staying motivated is something you will need to work on regularly.

When you have regular, ongoing work, it can be hard sometimes to get or staying motivated to get the job done.  Many times when it is time to invoice you may be motivated so you can get paid.  But being able to stay motivated regularly is important.

For example, I had a job where there was a blog I needed to keep updated and was having problems getting into it for over a month.  I had a hard time wanting to keep writing while the client was working out the issues.  I did write, but not like I had in the past.  Now the site is up and working, I am now ready to get going again.  I was finding I was having trouble keeping motivated, but the little break ended up helping me now that it is ready to go.

When you are motivated you will do a better job along with continually getting new work. It is also important to look for work, stay on top of any new skills you can use or need for what you are doing and even looking at what you have covered.  I have also found that looking for work tends to help out as well.

Don’t be Afraid of Feedback…


As a freelancer, feedback is very important.  Without it you will never know you are doing, what you can be doing better and what you are doing well.  Feedback can come from a variety of people and in different forms.  You will always want to make sure you have good feedback and at a place where people can see it, whether it is current clients or potential clients.

Where do you get feedback:

  • Current clients
  • Former clients
  • People you use to work for before freelancing

Where should you have feedback placed:

  • If you use an online company you will usually have a place as jobs are finished to have feedback
  • Your own website – Have a page just for feedback
  • Social Media accounts – Facebook, LinkedIn
  • Referrals

It will be important to make sure you have links to the various places you have your feedback or are able to direct people to your feedback.  This will help to bring you more clients. If you also have referrals, you will be even better off, because it is better to hear it directly from the current or previous client.  But it is a good idea to let them know you appreciate the feedback and try to either do the same for them or even give them a discount on their next project.

Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback either.  You never know what you will get.  Many times clients are just waiting for you to ask them for feedback or a recommendation.

Taking a Client and Making Them Regular to Your Workload…


Many times we apply for or get jobs that are a one time deal and it is done.  But really what makes your business grow is when you have continual or ongoing work along with referrals.  There are those who have a bad experience with some of the online agencies, whether they are your fault or not, and may not have anything to do with you.  If you are willing to work with your clients when they have a bad experience you will make them want to keep working with you. Then you will also want to consider looking at getting business on your own as well.

To get work on a regular basis or that is continual or ongoing, you need to make sure you exceed the expectation of the client.  Then for those who you work without side of places like oDesk, elance, guru, etc, make sure you have a contract, set up your rates, have an invoice you use, a way to track the invoice ID’s you give your customers, etc.  For example I have a Customer Invoice Tracking I use to keep track of my customers, how much the invoice was, the invoices they have paid, invoices still waiting to be paid, etc.  Having an Invoice Template set up for you to use will be important as well.  You will find I have attached a copy of what I use for the invoice tracking and invoice template. by clicking on those particular areas.  The idea is to not work harder but smarter, so if you find something that works for you, then tweak it to meet your needs.

Make sure your rates are competitive along with making worth your time and effort and meeting the needs of the clients as well.  These may change the longer you work, get more experience, etc.  But if you are going to change the rates for current clients, make sure you give them ample notice this change and letting them know when it will take place.

Learning New Skills…


Many times it would be a lot easier to keep using the same skills and never learn any new skills.  But where does this get you?  It will get you the same work, but it may or may not help you get more clients and/or work.  As long as you are willing to do the basics of the skills you are advertising, you will never get more work.

An example from my life would include a couple of the following:

  • I had never written blog articles before.  I decided to learn how to do this and then eventually started this blog.  This helps me keep my skills up when it comes to blog writing along with using it as a way to let others see how I do with blog writing.  It is also a good way to be able to show my other skills as well.
  • Sales Letters.  I usually don’t feel sales letters are my strength, but had a client ask if I would write some for some work I had done for him.  I was willing as long as he gave me a sample he liked, along knew I hadn’t done it before, but was willing to give it a try.  He was willing to take this into consideration.

Don’t be afraid to try something new.  If it doesn’t work, you don’t have to do it again or keep trying it.  But if it feels right, you can look into developing this new skill.  This new skill can be great when talking with clients, whether current or new.  If it is a current client, they may be wanting to start a blog or whatever your new skill is and you can be the one to do it besides the other work you do.  If you are looking at adding new clients, this is a great way to try and get new clients because of the new skill you have developed or are developing.

Make sure you let the clients know if you are starting to use a new skill, so they know you are working on improving a skill or it is something you may not be at the same level as others who are applying.  Some may be willing to work with you if you already are working for them and have volunteered to try and do something new.

You also want the new skills you are adding seem to go naturally with what you are already providing.  If you are writing, then the different writing documents will vary.  Also do research and see the examples out there as well.  This can be a great way to see how things work or how to do the new skill.  This can be a great way to learn and eventually add it to the list of what you can do.