When You Don't Have the Freedom You Wanted
When we commit to working for ourselves, we're typically drawn to the full autonomy it offers: we get to choose what we do, how we do it, when we do it, and ever more importantly, where we do it. So why do so many of us feel that the business we built doesn't allow us to honor the values we made this massive leap into entrepreneurship for?
More often than not, it's because the way we work with our clients is at odds with how we best do our work.
Imagine this: You're a talented designer who has built an incredibly portfolio of work thanks in part to the amount of time you spend outside in order to rejuvenate your creative juices. You love being able to dive deep into a project and get into uninterrupted flow.
But this new client insists on emailing you every day to change the client scope, to check in on progress, to make sure that you understand their point of view... We've all been there.
But there always comes a point in working with my freelance clients when a familiar thought crosses their mind:
I can work with clients my way.
Just because they’re paying for my services doesn’t mean that they have to run the show. We get to share the power.
Similarly to how it’s up to both the coach and the client to give power to the coaching relationship, it’s also both of our responsibilities to actively design it, to intentionally decide how we want it to look.
What It Looks Like to Run Your Business YOUR Way
As a freelancer, you have a responsibility to yourself as a business owner, to the creative inside you, and to your client to make that collaboration look and feel like you need it to.
So start training your clients to work how you’d like to work.
Don’t want to answer emails on the weekend? Check in on Fridays, updating them with your progress and let them know to expect an email on Monday outlining what the next steps are.
Done with one-off projects? Start building a long term relationship with your client by asking about their long term vision and understanding how the work you’re doing together supports that.
Confused about whether your just a brainstorming partner or the expert who takes the lead? Design that into every meeting positioning yourself in the role that you want to be in.
Tired of emails asking for a progress report? Build in progress check points with your client from the get-go by adding them into your project agreement you have them sign.
Scared about not having consistent income? Create an intentional payment schedule with clients to ensure that they each pay a deposit and split the payments according to what you need to feel safe.
Your Next Step Toward Training Your Clients
You have more power than you could possibly realize. That’s why your clients are hiring you.
Step into your power so you can co-create the collaboration you’re yearning for. Who’s with me?