donderdag 16 februari 2012

10 tips to a higher professional score

Whatever you do, you can always do it better. Here are some tips to improve your work results:

1- Analyze where you stand right now, the parts of your professional life that work and the ones that fail. Ask yourself about the things you like doing and the ones that you don’t;

2- Think of your goals and establish the objectives that you want to fulfill;

3- Brainstorm. Think about the actions that would allow you to fulfill those objectives. Put your creativity at stake by thinking of your competitors’ success, both in your own field and in other different areas;

4- Check your priorities and select only the best ideas. Look for a balance between the actions that will allow you to generate a greater impact and those than - in agreement to your resources, knowledge and capacities- are easier/simple to accomplish;

5- Make a plan. Translate your better ideas into a concrete plan, selecting the actions that you can carry out without putting the rest of your work at stake;

6- Create a calendar and order your actions in time;

7- Follow the plan. Your capacity of execution is the one parameter that makes the difference between fantasy and the reality. Avoid procrastination, comfort zones and laziness but be flexible enough to change on the move and quickly;

8- Measure the real impact of these actions by checking the possible objectives in contrast with the initial objectives. Ask yourself the key questions: have you reached the objectives that you first aimed? -To what extent? -What has failed? -Why?

9- Correct and fit the actions to improve results. This exercise will allow you to verify which are the actions of greater impact, and which ones offer the best yield between the effort and the final results;

10-Continue improving. When everything fits well in your professional life, work keeps on coming non-stop. Still, keep thinking on how to improve it and on the following steps.

Freelancers' 4 Deadly Sins And How to Avoid Them

Sure, remote work is convenient and it gives you the liberty to do most things your way but it should not be a reason to slack off or take work for granted. We list down the top 4 "deadly" sins which can kill your freelance career.

Working Whenever You Want To

Do not get up only when you feel like getting up. Remote work gives you the freedom to control your schedule but this doesn’t mean that you can just work whenever you want. Create a schedule and stick to it as much as possible. Let your employers know when you are usually online. Work when you are most productive. If you are a morning person, don't work at night when you are already exhausted.

Going Incommunicado

Just because you know your boss will never knock on your apartment door does not mean you can miss out on calls and emails. Communication is very important especially when working remotely. Keeping in touch thru your email and instant messenging programs is the next best thing to being physically present. Inform your client ahead of time if you're going to miss out on work.


Whether you are a writer or a programmer, give yourself a timeline for each project you take on. Get a calendar and track down your progress. Learn about time management, create alerts and reminders. Do not put off until tomorrow what should be done today. Missing a deadline makes a negative impact on your reputation as well as your client's business.

Not taking it Seriously

Freelancing used to be considered an in-between job and was synonymous to technically being unemployed but that has changed tremendously over the last couple of years. Many freelancers have found their niche and success online. Virtual is the new way of working and freelancing is the next big thing so do not take freelancing for granted. It is a career - be proud of it.

How to avoid the freelancer’s burn-out
It’s not easy to deal with many assignments at the same time without falling to pieces. Follow these tips to implement a system of sustainable and sensible work that allows you to answer to your clients’ expectations. You may consider this:

1. Rest. Exhausting days must be the exception and not the rule. Rest, take naps and take work shifts that don’t exceed 50 minutes.

2. Vacation. Allow yourself to vacations from time to time, at least, once a year. It is not necessary to take faraway trips, just make sure you travel to relax.

3. Stick to your objectives. Normally we assume that we know what we want, and that we know clearly our objectives. But this is not always so. Many professionals go freelance to earn their lives but have not had an opportunity to deepen their true objectives. The consequence of this imprecision is that we end up doing a job that we don’t like or does not motivate and, worse, that we do not know where it leads. This lack is usually translated in dissatisfaction.

4. Put variety in your work. Boredom is one of the main enemies of any activity. This happens because a good part of our work is repetitive. For that reason it is so important that you try to change your routine at all the levels by changing your workplace from time to time, by testing new working tools, by introducing new marketing strategies.

5. Spark up with small daily challenges. Lack of motivation is, next to boredom, another one of the great enemies of any prolonged activity. A simple and effective way to avoid it is to consider daily work like a series of small stimulating challenges. Instead of making things regularly, try to do them in a different way, following a way that you have not tried previously. Think of your tasks as challenges.

6. Celebrate your success. No matter how small they are, just allow yourself a reward. This does not mean a costly celebration, just do something that you do not normally do.

7. Be positive. Motivation is as important as talent. The best way to maintain motivation is to concentrate yourself in the positive aspects and enjoy a much more satisfactory life.

To market, to market, to get design gigs?

On several online forums, in recent face-to-face discussions with designers, and in numerous emails the past few weeks, the question has been the same: "How should an independent graphic designer go about marketing themselves?"

I don't pretend to have all the answers for every business. However, the most successful methods for promoting business are listed below. Hopefully others will find some valuable advice and tools for bringing clients their way.

Industry design competitions:

The majority of my marketing budget goes to cover entry fees in industry design competitions. Having pieces honored results in work being printed in design annuals and other design books. I have at least one potential client a week contact me because they have seen my work in a design book at their local bookstore. It also gives you "bragging rights" for press releases announcing your career accomplishments. Do be cautious of "design contests" that are nothing more than "spec" work in disguise.

Press releases: One of my major methods of marketing/promotion is sending out press releases about my work. Make a list of newspaper and magazine editors in your area, and the editors of design and business publications you wish to contact, and send out releases about your business - announcing a new business, new clients, completed projects, design awards and other accomplishments. Seek out press release distribution opportunities online as well such as or

Developing relationships with editors, and design or business editors, creates a number of possibilities for future media exposure of one's work and business. I also send out my press releases in email format to past clients, current clients, potential clients who have contacted me, vendors, friends and family. You never know when someone needs to be "reminded" that your services are available.
Networking: Make EVERYONE you know aware of what you are doing - family, friends, neighbors, former clients, local businesses, and others. Join a local business organization, Chamber of Commerce, industry related organization (International Association of Business Communicators, local ad federations, marketing associations, Women in Communications, public relations organizations, AD2, etc.) and network with people who may need your services. ALWAYS carry your biz card with you. Part of networking is participating in online forums specific to design or business.


These days my most effective marketing tool is my blog - which is done a no cost. Still, it gets me a great deal of exposure and brings a large number of clients my way. It also directs writers and editors my way who want to use me as a resource or write about my blog. (I just did a Google search for my blog's name and 65,400 references were found.)


I am surprised at the number of independent designers I come across who do not have a web presence. If you don't have a website you had better get one established. Your potential clients will EXPECT it. Most of my clients come to me by way of my website - after reading about me or seeing my work elsewhere - and 80-85% are from outside my home state.

Online directories:

Make use of free and paid online directories to get your name and contact info out to possible clients. (Watch for a blog entry about online directories in the near future.)

Work with nonprofits:

A good way to promote your business is to do pro bono, or discounted, work for nonprofit causes you support. You should get a credit on all the pieces being produced for the organization. You also have the opportunity to meet a lot of business leaders in the community who serve of the board of directors or are involved with the group. I discourage designers from ever doing free work for "for profit" ventures. In doing so you convey that your work has little or no value - and that's what they will remember if you go back to them for future projects.

Being the expert:

Writing articles for publications, making yourself available to the media as an industry expert and being a speaker are all excellent methods of promotion. I was once contacted by a potential client who was given my name by someone who had heard me speak to a group of Small Business Development Center educators FOUR YEARS earlier!

Establishing relationships with editors has been a great marketing tool for me. I was recently contacted by a writer for a major business magazine. He remembered me being quoted in an article on a website five years ago and sought me out. Such exposure always results in new client possibilities. When editors or writers contact me for quotes or illustrative content I usually drop everything to make what they need happen. Most such offers have a limited "shelf life."

Direct Mail:

Target the businesses with which you would like to work and send them a postcard, brochure or flyer about your services. It's been over 15 years since I've done so, but when I did I had ten new clients over a period of several weeks and I was still getting work from the one 750-piece mailing five years later.

For me it's all about spending as little as possible to market/promote my efforts for maximum exposure and results. My work is constantly promoting itself - with minimum effort by me. I do dedicate at least half of each Friday - the day each week that I have no client contact - to marketing and promotion.
As I mentioned earlier, this is not the "be all, end all" list of marketing and promotion possibilities for the independent designer. Still, the suggestions should be helpful in getting you started with some marketing efforts.

Would you like to add some tips? Let us know.

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Freelance Termen


zonder een vaste arbeidsovereenkomst, niet in vaste dienst

kleine zelfstandige ondernemer die in opdracht diensten verleend

Zonder vast werkverband

Freelance is het werken voor een persoon, project of bedrijf zonder vast dienstverband aan te gaan. Een persoon die op freelance basis werkt wordt een freelancer genoemd.

Zonder duurzaam contract

Wanneer je werkt als freelancer, werk je zonder vast werkverband ofwel dienstverband. Een freelancer is niet in vaste dienst en werkt zonder arbeidsovereenkomst.
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