and this is my profile on peopleperhour.com
This may be a good podcast for you to listen to for advice on how to get started. They have some episodes dedicated to getting started. http://devchat.tv/freelancers/
Get in touch with people Contribute to open source projects Be active on these forums helping other people
ITs all good PR and will raise your profile..
If there is a local government project that helps new business start up, get down there and make friends with everyone! I did this and stayed in contact. Eventually, they started reccomend inc me to new businesses. Startups can be a pain and have little budget, but they as they grow, you grow too.
Peopleperhour is a little pointless in my experience. People wanting the world for $10! You soon learn how to read clients that are serious about business and those who aren't.
If you have a local chamber of commerce (as its called in the UK), join up. Go to networking events and just get out there. You have to be a salesperson as well as a nerd. It's good fun.
Lastly, and most importantly... Be confident about your abilities and make sure you are enthusiastic about what you do. All that will come out when you meet new clients. Not everything is online, so get out there and meet potential clients. People would trust someone they have met over someone that they have chatted to over email. People have even reccomeneded my company after meeting them and they have never even used us!
My advice, don't bother, at least not yet. Working for yourself sounds great, your own hours, working from home, nobody looking over your shoulder, but it just isn't like that.
You'll still have deadlines, you'll still need to be available at any time during working hours or even out of them. Worst of all, until you become well known and respected, you'll be scratching around for any work available, which pays poorly (if at all) and gives little satisfaction. Holidays/vacations will be a thing of the past because you don't get paid, same if you're sick.
I've been freelancing on and off since the 1990's and can tell you there's nothing like a regular income coming in each week/month to pay your bills and put food on the table.
Maybe, once you've made a name for yourself and built up some good contacts, it could work out, but I wouldn't recommend that lifestyle for somebody just starting out.
Basically, you need to already be in demand to stand a chance.
I started my career as a freelancer - it just happened, knew some people, who knew some people. Shortly i was booked two years ahead. So why i quit and started to work for company, everything sitesense said. + i had some bad customers and not just that i wasn't paid in time, some of them were awfull people.
So now i work for local company, i'm participating to projects in size, that i could never do as a freelancer, i have regular payments, i do not need to talk directly to our customers (as much, jus to clear some technical details), i work in a great team, we share knowledge all the time, i gain more experience here in a few month than i did whole time i was a freelancer (~1.5 years).
But for me most valuable thing is that i can be developer, i don't need to be anything else than that. I can do exactly what i love the most.
Just something to think about.
Good luck :)
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