It has been quoted a lot number of times that everything has its pros and cons; same goes for freelance designing. Any web professional who is working on his own gets to enjoy a lot of perks for instance, not reporting to anyone, working on his own convenience however, with all these perks, there are hard times too. Every now and then they find themselves in a situation of performing a new task which is entirely new to them and if not new, it is not their forte. Since freelancers have to work on different projects every now and then, they have to face the challenge of working on something new from time to time. Taking on something new is always a little difficult yet interesting. Not only, it will help you grow as a web professional, it is definitely going to add to your designer repute as well. From small sticker printing projects to large scale web site redesigns, think through potential bottlenecks you may encounter with the project.
Whenever you are working on something totally new, you must be sure of your moves. You obviously do not want to do something wrong and appear irresponsible. A client will also have doubts regarding your lack of experience related to the particular project. You should not allow your lack of experience to take a good opportunity away from you. When a client comes to you with something you are not well aware of, make sure you do not put off the client with your concerns. You should come across as someone who is confident and can handle any kind of task.
As a web professional, you should know the importance of learning new things every now and then because designing world is constantly evolving with the new technology. Also, the competency factor should remain in you to learn and work on new things. In this article we will be discussing a few steps that any web professional should follow for taking on something new.
Prepare Yourself for Something New
If you come across an opportunity which is worth taking and involves some new tasks, instead of letting go of it, make sure you prepare yourself to take it. It does not matter if you haven’t worked on it before. There is always a first time and it’s never too late to learn a new thing. So, if you are expecting a project, make sure you do your homework before you meet the client. You would not want to commit for any project that you are not capable of doing. Once you get to know the theme of the project, make sure you take out time to do a good research on it.
The Internet is a great way to learn almost anything. So check blogs or other information resources to learn about the subject. Initially, all you need to do is learn basics and you will learn the details once you start working on the projects. The basics will help you in understanding whether you can or cannot work on the project. Analyze what kind of new hardware/software is required for the project. Along with that, make sure you note down whatever new thing you will have to learn in order to be able to work on project. If you think you can do it, you should simply go for it. Before you take on the project, you should be well informed about what’s really involved in the project and if you have the available resources.
Do not take on the project if you are not really sure about the things involved. Also, if you think that such things should not be learnt via a client’s project, do not take it. You do not want to risk your reputation for a project. Take it only if appears to be a good fit.
Focus on Long-term Strategy
You should not grab a project just for the sake of it. Even if you can work on the new tasks, you still need to think if you really need to do it or not. Once you decide to learn something new you are deciding to invest your time in it. Make sure it is worth it. Many freelance web professionals do not focus on long term strategies which is wrong. Before taking on any project, you need to analyze how this project will help you in future.
Learning anything new is obviously not easy. It will require a lot of time and effort on your part. You might have to take a formal training for which you will have to take out time from other projects that you have been working on. Also, with a new learning you get some additional tasks. Make sure you have time for all this before you get involved in any kind of new project. Also, you cannot take risks on client’s project. On one side you will be trying hard to meet deadlines and on the other hand things might be messing up because of you are not sure of what to do. At times, it is better to stick to what you are good at when it comes to taking projects. You should continue with learning new things but not on the risks of projects.
Is this Really Worth It?
You must be excited about learning something new. However, before you dive into stuff, you need to make sure if this learning is really worth it or not. If the project requires you to learn something which is really in demand these days and seems to stay in the designing industry for a long time, then learning that skill is indeed a good investment. However, if the project requires you to learn an outdated program which is no longer applicable to most of the projects then it does not look like a good move. Any skill that you learn should make you more marketable.
For instance, one of your clients offers you a printing job, which you haven’t done before. In my opinion it is worthy to take it up and learn this skill along the way as designing and printing go side by side. You also need to see if you have enough time for learning new stuff. The new project should not affect your current projects. In order to learn properly you will have to focus and if you cannot give your complete attention to learning, do not jump into anything new for now unless you have a proper time. Also, consider that the skill you want to learn is taking your career to a new level. If not, it is not worth it.
Finding Consultation is Okay
If you have taken on a project and you are still unable to meet deadlines, hiring and experience freelancer will help you a lot. There is no harm in finding a good consultation to get the project done. This person can help you a lot in learning new things and solving the problems which you are unable to solve. Even though you will have to invest a little bit however, the stress that it is going to take away from you is all worth it. You will be able to meet deadlines and learn new things too.
Be Honest with Your Client
When a client approaches you with a new task, don’t hesitate in informing him about your lack of experience in a particular field. It is very important for you to come across as honest because then they will respect you for the fact that you are not working just for the sake of getting projects. No matter what, never lie about something that you do not really know of. Be very precise and clear about the services you offer so that there is no room for confusion.
When you are discussing a new project with a client, make a strong case. Instead of telling them what you do not have, try to convince them how your current knowledge can help you in getting the project done. Any client will judge you from your portfolio so whenever a client comes with a new task; show them your previous projects involving new tasks, which you have completed successfully. Your successful track record will definitely help a client in deciding the fate of the project.