I’m 32 years OLD (Yup I know). Unlike the previous years in my life, my goal for coming year is more practical and involves writing down what I have learned in last 10 years.
Recently a friend shared with me a poll asking, “Are you a proud entrepreneur” and I answered “Yes”. The people who have not known me since long, think I’m working on a start-up. It sounds cool, but that is not the case because I’m doing what I have been doing, since almost a decade. In January 2016, it would be 10 years since I quit my Architecture studies and got into freelancing. It’s been a long time and the sad part is, I have not achieved anything worth being proud of. The only thing I have been proud of is to begin my career without any help and with almost nothing and to be able to continue working on things I love while also being able to do as much as I can for my family. So to answer my friends question of whether “I’m a proud entrepreneur”, my answer is “I really don’t know”.
I started creating websites in the era when Geocities & Altavista sounded exciting. The Internet has changed a lot since then and fortunately, it’s something that still excites me. To make things clear for people who have not known me since long, let me state that I am not a start-up. I don’t have a fancy word for describing what I do other than saying, that I’m a person who makes his living by creating websites. I hope this information is sufficient.
So this coming year, I have made a commitment to writing more consistently about things that I have learned over the years from my own mistakes and the things I learned from other people. To keep my posts relevant, I would also be sharing about everything that I’m working on now and over the next 12 months.
If you continue reading, while I may not promise you instant riches or to make you better at your job, I am sure when you find yourself in a situation similar to mine, you would be able to make more informed decisions and maybe better decisions than me.
So before I write about some serious things in my next post, the few things I like to share with newbies getting into freelance web development work are
- Make your own website before you try to pitch your services to potential customers.
- You won’t master all things. So focus what you love and learn deeply about it.
- While you master the things you love, make sure to read and experiment with everything else. Being “Jack of all trades”, is a thing that will give you a long stable career as a freelancer no matter what the market conditions are.
- Don’t just attend big events to learn how to get clients, try networking with other people with similar experience as yours.
- Attending every single meetup and seminar would not make you a better developer. Make sure you are selective of how you spend your time.
- Once you start making money, try to set a legal structure & bank account within the first 3 to 6 months.
- While some of you may have a financial obligation towards your family, try not to spend every buck on personal things. Set a fixed salary for yourself, and make sure money remains and continues to grow in your company account.
- And lastly, don’t over think. If you don’t know which direction to take, try doing random things. You never know what you may end up liking.
I apologize for the mistakes in this post. I am doing this after a long time, and while I may be better at writing when I am getting paid, I’m certain that eventually I’ll get better at writing for free :). If you want to learn about something specific feel free to email me or write down your ideas in the comments below.
I hope you all have a wonderful & peaceful time with your family and friends over this Christmas and began the New Year with lots of hope & passion for everything that you set out to do.