Discover Your Big Why
If you’re reading this guide, you have a reason for considering the freelance journey. And you have a way to contribute to this industry. On vacation, we may travel for fun, but other times we travel to help and leave a positive impact on the places we visit.
The freelance journey is one where you can leave an indelible mark on those around you. Your business can be a memorable force for good that clients readily turn to. To discover your “Big Why,” you need to ask yourself these questions:
- Why are you starting a freelance business?
- What impact do you want your business to have on…
- Your family
For example, Freelance University’s WHY is “We help service-based entrepreneurs to achieve independence, freedom, and economic stability.”
Your WHY will be a combination of the target clients you seek to impact and the way your work will impact their lives. So, first of all, brainstorm a list of your ideal clients:
Who are the target clients you seek to impact?
- Fitness Professionals
- Business & Marketing Professionals
- Service Professionals (lawyers)
- Local Brick & Mortar Businesses
- Real Estate Professionals
Then ask yourself what results your services will create in your clients’ lives.
Using these elements, you can now create your “Purpose Statement”:
[Business Name] helps [Target Audience] to overcome [Challenge] that leads to [Desired Results].
Here’s a example of FreeU’s Purpose Statement:
“FreeU helps online freelancers build high-demand skills that result in rewarding client and income opportunities.”
The Building Blocks of an Effective Business Plan
Now that you know your WHY, you need to know HOW you’re going to build your business. This is part of a five-step process that includes Your Vision, Your Niche, Your Audience, Your Goals, and Your Action Plan. We’ll cover Niche and Audience in Step Three: Select a Profitable Niche, so for now, let’s focus on discovering your vision.
Discover Your Vision
In this step, think further about your goals and dreams, asking yourself these questions:
- Paint a picture of what your business and life will look like in ONE YEAR. (What are your goals and what income would you like to achieve?)
- How many clients will you be working with?
- What will your monthly income look like?
- What new freedoms do you want to have in your life? (For example, create a vision board as a tangible reminder of your goals.)
Goal Setting and Action Planning
In the book The 12 Week Year, Brian Moran says, “The thinking that says, ‘I will start building my ideal future tomorrow, or next week, or next month,’ is fatally flawed. The future you are going to live is the one you are creating right now at this very moment.”
Now that you have your WHY and your vision, it’s time to set your goals and plan your action using these three steps:
Map out the specific goals you would like to accomplish in the next 30 days! For example, one goal could be “Determine my specific niche services and packages I will offer in my freelance business in the next 30 days.”
Identify the key action steps you must take in order to accomplish each one of your goals. An example is “Research five different websites in my niche.”
Track your progress at the end of every week.
You can use helpful tools and apps like Trello, Asana, Google Docs, Evernote, and MindMeister to record your goals and plans.
And now, let’s move on to Step Three: Select a Profitable Niche, where you will determine your niche and audience.
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