First off, what is the gig economy? Even better, what’s a gig? It’s actually much simpler than you’d think. A gig is typically a one-time job, sometimes with a contract, performed by a freelancer or independent worker. Many people are turning to this particular way of income nowadays because of ease, freedom, and the ability to be your own boss.
The bigger question of the day is, “can you turn to the gig economy?” Absolutely! All you need is a profound skill set, a bit of confidence, and an idea of your target market and/or preference of “gigs.” That’s right; now is the time to brainstorm.
But first you should know why people are turning to the gig economy; discover what makes this way of living better or different than your current job. What are the positives about this career path that will make you hop off of the couch right now to begin freelancing?
Freedom of Time
Not only the freedom of time, but the allowance to be flexible. This is by far one of the biggest advantages to the gig economy. You work when you want to, but really when you need to. You can work at home, at your local coffee shop, on a rollercoaster, or in New Zealand. You can work in your pajamas or in a suit, eat when you want to, and live how YOU want to live. Your goal with current clients is to keep them happy, and ensure your work is turned in on time, with quality. Other than that, the ball is in your court and you are free to live the life you want to live.
Uncapped income sounds so wonderful. But it is hard work for that to become attainable. Referring to ‘Determining your Own Pay’ below, you have the power to set your prices. Set them fairly, but take your living situation into consideration. How much do you need monthly to be comfortable living? How do you secure this income? How do you grow these profits? Beyond these answers, it’s up to you. You set the prices, work when you want to or can, and raise the (income) bar for yourself after every quarter. Uncapped income is uncapped potential in the gig economy.
Determine Your Own Pay
Is there even a difference between uncapped income and determining your own pay? 100%. As determined above, uncapped income is simply your potential in the market, whereas determining your own pay has a few more hidden advantages: ability to change pricing for every client and every project, ease of determining your own hours, and convenience of setting your own pay schedule for clients. Now for a frame of reference for when you’re first starting out, it’s best to base your pricing truthfully. Yes, you are new and may be inexperienced. No, you might not have all of your ducks in a row yet. With that being said, do some Googling, ask professionals in the field, and just simply do your own research.
Ability to Grow
This is something to think about sooner, rather than later. Growing and scaling a business does take time, projections, and most importantly, a solid strategy or game plan. Beforehand, answer these questions: what is your availability? How much effort are you willing to put in, and for how much money? What kind of experience do you have to compete in the market and/or to take on clients of your own? And most importantly, what are your projected monthly or weekly needs, and can this “strategy” provide these things? Developing a well-rounded approach to scaling your business, along with some motivation and determination, will help form a clear path to success. Good luck, scalers.
Variety of Jobs
Always changing and evolving. You have the opportunity to change the market you work in, the client, the project, and more. Working in a gig economy, you have the ability to almost literally never do the same thing twice. You can’t say that about a 9-5 routine corporate job. Some people enjoy a set schedule and list of daily to-do’s. Myself and others in the gig economy enjoy the opposite—working on projects that appeal to us, with clients that we enjoy and/or relate to.
Be Your Own Boss
After every advantage given above, there is still no competition for the greatest advantage of all: being your own boss. Other than maintaining and gaining clients, there is no reporting to the top of the ladder. This time, it gets to be your way or the highway. Sounds enticing, right? In being your own boss, other benefits begin to trickle in: setting your own work hours, maintaining a diverse skill set, gaining experiences in areas you’re most interested in, connecting closely with your clients, reaping higher motivation for your work, and developing a much higher sense of satisfaction for both you and your clients.
So, ready to be your own boss? Scale your business? Become a freelancer? Great. You have the power to do so.
Remember, there are many gigs calling your name right now. And there are many positives to working in a gig economy. One quick tip before you begin however … always have another project to turn to. Don’t allow your work become inconsistent. Continuously plan for the future, and you’ll be a great addition to the gig economy in no time.