Soft skills for freelancers are a necessity! Whichever way you slice it, the need for soft skills in the freelancing world is one thing you can not ignore. Soft skills in freelancing are like a beginner pack for a newbie freelancer. However, it doesn’t exempt you if you’ve been in the system for a long. A building with a weak foundation, they say, crumbles with time. Your freelancing career might also end up this way if you lack the necessary soft skills for freelancers.
A freelancing career gives you the avenue to feel on top of the world. So, why not give your all to sustain that career which makes you happy? If all it takes is to develop some soft skills for freelancers to soar in your dream career, then do it. From the convenience of taking jobs at your pace to doing it within your comfort zone, freelancing is indeed a sweet career you can’t afford to do half-heartedly.
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Why You Need Soft Skills for Successful Freelancing
Freelancing labels you as self-employed, and being a boss doesn’t mean you should handle your tasks with levity. Soft skills are those sets of positive habits and skills you apply in any working condition. Incorporating these skills into freelancing assures you of an exciting ride in the freelancing world. The more reason we call them soft skills for freelancers. It’s a bonus to a freelancer who makes wise use of them.
Besides, the need for soft skills for freelancers skyrockets nowadays because some freelancers don’t take their tasks seriously. Hence, the company or clients they work for might get furious and fire them. So, this drastically increases the number of jobless freelancers but also gives you a chance to shine.
Now, what are those soft skills for freelancers that this post gives priority to? Let’s coast down the hill; it sure will be a lively journey.
8 Client-attracting Soft Skills for Freelancers in Nigeria
Problem-solving is one of the most vital soft skills for freelancers. It is the first skill you should develop before setting up your profile and diving into a freelancing career. Without problem-solving skills, you can’t attract the best clients or complete a job to satisfaction. When a client gives you a job you’re familiar with, still take time to apply your problem-solving skills. These soft skills in freelancing will enable you to carry out the job to your client’s taste.
Also, problem-solving skills allow you to point out, analyze, describe and come up with possible solutions to a task.
Good communication skills
Good communication skills are necessary skills a freelancer must possess. Soft skills for freelancers will always include effective communication. Communication paves the way for you as a freelancer. It allows you to write outstanding proposals and discuss jobs well with your clients. Therefore, good communication helps you understand your client’s needs and build trust that you can deliver.
A crucial soft skill for freelancers is keeping up with the time frame. It is one of the easiest soft skills you can use to win over your client’s heart. It will also earn you good recommendations. Thus, it builds you a stronger freelancing career than you ever expect. But first, what do I mean by the time frame?
Time frame is the estimate of time your client stipulates for you to complete a job. It may be hours, days, or more extended periods after you get the job. So, keeping up with this time frame will make you satisfy your client and build a trust tower.
Most people miss out on a positive approach when listing out the soft skills for freelancers. After you might have been getting jobs as a freelancer, the next step is to approach the jobs positively. Provided a job falls within your niche, have the mindset that you can do it even if you haven’t attempted it before. It not only motivates you to do your jobs perfectly. You also get more jobs if you have a positive approach.
A positive approach is more of a positive mindset. A freelancer who lacks this soft skill will always be scared off by most jobs and might end up not applying for them. They won’t bother to assess the positions to see if they’re a good fit or not. Thus, it reduces the rate at which they get jobs. Eventually, they might quit their freelancing career out of frustration.
Being one of the top soft skills for freelancers in demand, a high level of organisation attracts clients to you. Organisational skills work in almost every aspect of your life as a freelancer. First, your profile or resumé must be well-organized for hiring managers to spot the quality they need in you easily.
Besides, the way you carry out tasks clients give to you must display some level of organisation. This soft skill in freelancing can make you stand out amongst other freelancers.
Organisation also helps you complete your jobs faster. You can organize the assignments for a particular week using a Google sheet or WPS spreadsheet. If you are a writer, simply use Google Sheets to create a content calendar. The content calendar must include the date and time you want to make each. With this skill, you’ll complete the pile of tasks you believed only a supernatural could do.
Teamwork is a challenging but necessary soft skill for freelancers. How? A large percentage of freelancers work alone. However, some clients or jobs might require you to work in a team. Some clients prefer teamwork because of what they hope to achieve from your work.
For example, Mr Ajayi is a blogger who employs writers and editors to manage his blog. Tolu was a freelance writer who Mr Ajayi recently employed to write for his blog. However, Mr Ajayi’s blog requires the writers and editors to work closely. Poor Tolu hasn’t been in such working conditions before, and he also lacks teamwork skills. So, he finds it difficult to adjust to the working environment.
Tolu will post his articles without sending them to one of the blog’s editors first. Unfortunately, Tolu made a grave mistake by posting an article while omitting the topic one day. Most of the blog’s visitors complained about this in the article’s comment section. Mr Ajayi’s blog almost loses its rank among the top blogs in Nigeria. To avert further misfortune, the blog owner fired Tolu, and home he goes, with his writing minus teamwork skills. If you are a freelancer and you don’t want the same fate as Tolu, then learn the best ways to collaborate.
Flexibility is a soft skill in freelancing that can go a long way in making you a successful freelancer. The ability to adapt to any working condition or situation without causing a fuss is known as flexibility.
For instance, you work as a copywriter for a company where you deliver a copy per day. As a startup and developing company, it needs to promote itself by posting more copies to gain recognition. After deliberating on this, the company’s management adjusts the general schedule. Now, you have to deliver three copies per day. The new rule might be hard to abide by at first. But if you are flexible enough, you will be able to adjust with time.
Ability to withstand stress
The soft skills of freelancers can never be complete without the ability to withstand and manage stress. We call this stress management. When you are a pro freelancer, several clients might hire you simultaneously. It happens when you work on freelancing sites where you are open to many clients. Platforms like Upwork and Fiverr are good examples.
The only way to complete all of your pending tasks without burnout is to possess stress management soft skills for freelancers. The soft skill enables you to plan, organise and time yourself to complete each job without compromising quality.
How to Develop the Soft Skills You Need for Successful Freelancing
Cultivating a neutral habit is usually a hard nut to crack. It also applies when you want to develop soft skills in freelancing. The soft skills for freelancers are not the set of skills you can learn in a day. It requires a gradual process. So, it is a product of non-stop learning and hard work. How can you develop these soft skills in freelancing?
Make sure to trigger feedbacks
Some freelancers tend to carry out their jobs with a nonchalant attitude. This is why most hiring managers strictly hire those who have the soft skills for freelancers. Remember, you are a freelancer who aims for the best. It makes sense to be open to all soft skills in freelancing.
Triggering feedback from clients or people you work with is one of the ways to develop soft skills for freelancers. Moreover, it is the best way to build effective communication between you and those you work for. Asking your clients to review and compare your previous task to a recent task can help. Ask them to tell you which is better.
Feedback like this can make you discover what your client truly wants. Eventually, it can bring your freelancing career to another level.
While trying to develop soft skills for freelancers, observe others a lot. The others I mean here are successful freelancers. Note those aspects that you envy, be it their soft skills or attitude to work. Gather those soft skills with the one you would like to imbibe. Learn and practice these skills with the clients you deal with from time to time. It is just a matter of time before you successfully develop all the soft skills in freelancing.
Have the willingness to learn
Most freelancers are not willing and ready to learn. They believe they are the best in their field, which is not so. They forget that the top-rated freelancers today were once novice freelancers. It escapes their mind that they need to possess some vital soft skills to be successful in their freelancing career.
So, to get to the apex of your career by developing the required soft skills for freelancers, be willing to learn.
Build productive relationships
If a positive relationship exists between you and the freelancers around you, you unknowingly develop teamwork soft skills. To lay an excellent foundation on which to build your freelancing career, endeavour to build productive relationships with everyone. You can also include your clients in this positive relationship ring.
Hey! Dear freelancer, now I’m sure you’ve learnt the soft skills you need for successful freelancing. Perhaps you’ve also discovered why you should develop soft skills for freelancers.
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Priscilla Ajayi is a pharmacist-in-view and an avid writer with interests in health, lifestyle, career, relationships, technology, and self-development topics.
As an adventurer, Priscilla is always taking bold moves towards expanding her niche in writing, learning new skills, and achieving her set goals.
In her downtime, Priscilla can be spotted reading novels, listening to music, singing, writing poems, or sketching images.
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