We are faced with a totally new frontier where we can “search” for a whole new life.
I like that word “boldly”. For too long, we have been taught to work hard for someone else. That’s how businesses used to work. He got a degree, got a job, and then waited and prayed his employer wouldn’t fire him. He meekly put himself through more hours and more work for less pay and fewer benefits. So they fired you anyway!
Do you polish your resume and go back to the same old fray? Going back to school to get another degree and getting back on the merry-go-round? Do you just create another “job” for yourself by “freelancing” – doing the same tasks for a little more money? Not to mix up my science fiction references, but “you must unlearn what you have learned.” Let me make a suggestion:
Go boldly where you haven’t gone before.
For more than a decade, we have supported communication experts and creative service professionals by helping them create their own businesses. But what does that do Really What does it mean in this new economy? Freelancers have been around for centuries. Did you know that the term comes from the Crusades? Knights hired their services (their skills with a “spear”) to the highest bidder. Since they did not belong to one side of the other, they became known as “free spears. “I don’t think their The retirement plan wasn’t too good either.
Invest in a new mindset.
We spend a lot of time and money getting our education, creating our promotional materials, and networking. Did you know that more than 90% of your success comes from inside your head? Their knowledge and experience is just the tip of the iceberg. I want to challenge you to make March, the month of the rescued guinea pig, the month in which you expand your mindset beyond being a freelancer and become an innovative entrepreneur for the new economic frontier. Here are some ideas and resources to help you get there:
Expand your sources of income to new income quadrants:
In the IASECP Academy Basic Business Course, we delve into the income quadrants as a way to stabilize your income, regardless of what the economy is doing.
- Become an expert into experts. Develop a toolkit, checklist, templates, or a system that your peers can use to optimize the way they serve their customers.
- Create a case study extraction file. Dig into your previous projects and write some snapshots of the “lessons learned” with examples from your own experience. What a gold mine for others just starting out!
- Create must-have packages. Customers don’t really know what they need. Create clear packages that give them options, at different prices, that you can produce quite easily. For example, a simple logo / branding project can be turned into a business stationery package with business cards, letterheads, web banners, and other pieces of identification, as easily as making a single logo. Or a business marketing strategy plan can be turned into a mixed media strategy, a public relations campaign. Now think of a few.
- Form a team to provide a complete package. We’ve been singing the praises of the collaboration for over a decade. Now expand the idea beyond simple service provision. How about joining forces with experts in adjacent industries to provide trainings, workshops, seminars, retreats?
- Turn it into a product. Whatever you do once, consider recording, either on paper in workbooks or audibly / visually for downloadable products or CD / DVD projects (for a higher price) that you can sell from your website.
- Create a course or series of courses. Remember that you can teach clients (who cannot pay for your personal services) and you can train others in your own industry to seek leadership from you.
- Get others to market and help sell your products and courses. Create your own affiliate programs. Invite partners and colleagues to earn a small percentage of each transaction to send buyers your way.
- Be an affiliate of others. If there is a product, service or expert that you believe in, see if they have an affiliate program and recommend them from your site. Be honest and authentic and don’t turn your site into a sales page, share resources and take a little break.
- Be a leader. You are an expert at something. Maybe it’s just understanding what your customers really want, whatever. Share that idea with your tribe. Don’t have a tribe? Get connected. Connect to your community. (hint: IASECP is a great place to start).
- Be a connector. As you connect with your community, take note of the experiences of other members of your tribe. Knowing who to send people to is a very valuable service. It makes you the go-to person, even when it’s not your cup of tea.
Some good examples to learn from:
Going bold doesn’t mean you have to go alone; Following early adopters can make it a lot easier and really fun. Here are a few that I follow:
- Emma McCreary | Tao of prosperity: That’s how it is. Our own Emma. Talk about mindset expansion! Emma’s blog is great for focusing your mind on another way of thinking about money and the energy with which you go into your business.
- Pat Flynn | Smart passive income: I love this guy’s blog! He was laid off just over a year ago and decided to experiment with “passive income” strategies and Internet business models. His blog not only recounts what he has learned, but also shares his real income report every month detailing what he did and what the results were. (Hint: it averages $ 10,000 a month in just over ONE year!)
- Ed Gandia | The wealthy freelancer: Ed is a writer and editor who writes about his experiences when he went from being a “freelancer” to a media mogul and business savvy. (Plus, he’s also gone from a PC goony to a Mac evangelist almost overnight, so he has to be on the right track!)
- Chris Guillebeau | The art of nonconformity: Chris has to be cool, he’s from Portland. His blog recounts his writings on how to change the world by achieving important personal goals while helping others at the same time. You are leading the battle against conventional beliefs, focusing on three areas: life, work, and travel.
Remember that the action after “Go bold” is “Search.”
So start looking. Focus and filter, but search.