Effective Freelancing Inside a Company – Freelancer’s Fortnight

Effective Freelancing Inside a Company – Freelancer’s Fortnight

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Categories: Tips and Tricks, Tutorials

With every freelancing career, you can’t pick and choose who you choose to work with, which is especially the case when you’re new to the market or low on work. Working as a freelancer means that work is likely to come in different forms that are slightly outside your discipline, an example of this is that your a Freelance Graphic Designer, and your asked to produce a greetings card for a client, which is not your speciality.

Depending on what type of freelancer you are and what you do for a living, forms of work will vary from freelancer to freelancer.

One of the common types of freelance work you’re likely to undertake sometime in your career is working on site, within a company, in their offices, face-to-face. If you’ve had previous jobs working for someone else then this is naturally going to be easier then someone who’s always worked for themselves. Regardless of how much previous employment experience you have, working within a company as a ‘temp’ is going to be a daunting experience. But how can you as a freelancer, get the best out of this experience, and leave the client happy and willing to hire you again?

Hold Back That Ego

Freelancing on site means one major thing. Your ego, your stubbornness, your ‘it is my way or nothing’ attitude, whatever you want to call it, needs to be left at the door! There’s simply no place for you to be kicking up a storm whilst working as a temporary employee under a limited contract. Firstly, it means it’s easier for them to say you’re not needed any more and replace you with someone else. Secondly, you’re there to do the work that’s been set out for you, as you haven’t been hired for you to dictate how stuff should and shouldn’t be done.

It’s not all doom and gloom though, to be successful on-site you’re going to be required to fit in the existing team. That means getting on with the people who you’re working closely with. Following the way they work instead of telling them how you think they should work is key. Friendly positive attitude is going to help you fit in quicker and people will be more willing to help you out if you’re stuck.

However, the client commissioned or employed you for a certain time because they liked what you had to offer. Now holding back your ego is very important, but it’s important to find that balance in not coming across as big headed, and also not just sitting in the corner, being that yes man. Finding that balance is key to keep your client being happy about the work which your producing, and also for you to get along with them too.

Meetings, Politics And Rules

Apart from client deadlines, as a freelancer, you’re essentially in control of your own working day. If you want to wake up at 11am, that’s up to you. If you want to only work 3 hours today then no-one is going to tell you otherwise. Unfortunately on-site means you’re no longer in control. But hold on, freelancing is all about the freedom, control and working for yourself. That’s still the case when working on-site, it simply means your shifting your mindset. It’s about collaboration and teamwork, importantly, working close with others.

You need to fit it for the project to be a success. You don’t have to make it your mission to make friends with every employee, but it’s paramount that they are comfortable around you, and your giving the company and team value. Company integration is important and is very closely linked to your working attitude. This working attitude will be shifted whilst your following the company rules and attend meetings whilst dealing with the general politics. It’s all part of the working environment, so it’s good to be prepared for it.

Add Value To Your Employer

You need to ensure you’re adding value to the company all the time. Going above and beyond is always going to help, although tight deadlines may hinder this. Be respectful to everyone who works there, even if they’re not associated to the project you are working on. Definitely don’t moan and groan about the office or others that work there and don’t show up in your scrappy jeans!

Do the best you can for the client, and you’ll be rewarded with another chance of employment with them.

Summary Of Points

  • Working on-site takes time to adjust, knowing this means it won’t be a shock to you during your first few weeks
  • Remaining positive and friendly is really going to help you connect with others, especially if there’s a steep learning curve or complex brand guidelines to follow
  • Company integration is key, as you’ll be required to work closely with others and ultimately getting the work done
  • Collaborating and respecting current employees is a must and asking questions isn’t a bad thing. Not sure where the PSD’s are located on the server? Don’t waste half-an-hour searching – “you wouldn’t of found it, it’s called untitled”, has happened! Be yourself, enjoy your time and any commercial experience is always a plus

Finally, remember you are there representing yourself as the brand. Think of it as a walking, talking advert. If people like the work you’re doing, they’re going to tell others about it, meaning you’ll get more commissions from it in the long run.

Many thanks for listening an visiting today, be sure to leave a comment below, as I’ll love to hear from you on this topic. Be sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr, we’ll love to see you on there. Thanks again, and have a great day!

About the author - Ash


I'm a web designer from Hampshire, England, and have been working with websites for nearly 10 years. I have a deep interest in website design and development, art, and most importantly t-shirt design. I also dabble in surfing, photography and drum and bass! I'm also the co-founder of Graphic Tide, based in the United Kingdom.

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