Career Tips

22
May

Why Your Portfolio is Crucial For Your Freelancing Career

With the advent of the Internet, more and more people today are working as “freelancers”. By the way, what’s a freelancer?  Well, the term is defined as a person who sells services to different employers without a long-term contract. The word is also defined as working “ independently”, or on temporary contracts, as opposed to long-term employment. Now, to succeed as a freelancer, the individual should have what’s called a “portfolio”.   Let’s find out why portfolios are crucial to the success of every freelancer.

portfolio

What is a Portfolio?

The word “portfolio” is defined as a set of pieces of creative work, or an employment record that’s collected by someone and use it to display or highlight their skills, especially to potential employers.  Freelancers today re required to create their own portfolios, and they should ensure that the freelance portfolio they create communicates to new and existing clients, and highlights their talent and professionalism. And depending on the quality of your portfolio, it could lead to a positive point of contact with the employer, or a quick exit.

How to Create A Successful Freelance Portfolio

And because a portfolio can either make, or break, your chances of getting a lucrative project or job, you should be able to create a successful freelance portfolio. Here are a number of innovative ideas to keep in mind.

  • Treat your portfolio as an advertisement, and make sure you leave your potential employers or clients wanting for more.  Your portfolio should effectively sell your services, and present you in a clean and simple manner.  Also make sure your portfolio gets your message or ideas across, and showcases your skills too.
  • Ensure that your contact details are obvious. Remember that your contact details are a vital part of your freelance portfolio. Thus, make sure they are accessible on your site, or clear in your written portfolio.
  • Don’t “Skimp” on your portfolio. Because your portfolio serves as an advertisement of your skills and talents, make sure you fully invest in it. Get a beautiful and manageable portfolio up and running quickly, but ensure that no details are inaccurate or substandard, or else you will not be able to impress your clients or potential employers.

Others suggest that you make your freelance portfolio as visual as possible because as the popular adage goes, “a picture paints a thousand words”.  A freelance portfolio with good-quality imagery should also be supported with detailed information about your skills and talents, along with the projects that you’ve already undertaken.  But if you don’t have design skills, you could try hiring a graphic designer to do this for you.  Freelance portfolios are not just for web developers, graphic designers or creative artists, but also for all digital professionals, as these are a must in today’s web-driven marketplace and environment.

19
Nov

Effective Ways To Unlock Employee Creativity

Creativity role is very important in our daily routines and lives especially nowadays when we are facing challenges and problems on a daily basis. The complexity of things has been increasing by the day as it is becoming problematic to resolve certain issues emerging out of unique problems. So, as it turns out, these unique problems must have super unique solutions for making the venture of profit making in businesses a roaring success. The people employed by various companies often face the problem of getting stuck in their daily routines of work that they are not able to harness their own originality and creativity in achieving success in business overall.

creativity

However, the employers are continuously thinking upon making the employee creativity a possibility by various activities and presenting to their employees certain scenarios that can best help them in thinking differently on the problems faced in business activities on a daily basis. Employee creativity can significantly help these employees in not only making a mark for themselves but also for the entire company or business to achieve greater heights of success through them. These activities may involve anything from games to uniquely arrange programs, etc. that are planned and thought of by the creative team closer to the employer. This in essence also depends on the employer’s business as a whole, as the particular business in a niche may mean differently to different employees and their job positions may also let them see things differently.

Some of the activities to go for creativity and generally make the employees think more and in better way may involve the following:

  • Games

Games may be considered as the source of permanent enjoyment and support for many individuals. These games help the employees in not only getting close to each other and working in harmony but also provide them with the ability of thinking differently. The choice of games is very important for improving Employee Creativity, as this choice might be very different for the employees who are involved in different activities altogether. For example, an employer may use chess as a game if his company involves use of really innovative strategies, or other health oriented sports as well for improving the team work in the office overall. These activities not only help the employees in harnessing their creativity but work wonders for businesses, as many case studies have shown this in the past.

  • Snacks and food

Snacks and food not only involve the eating habit improvement but also provides you with inspirational ideas. As the phrase, ‘food for thought’ somehow applies to the snacks. These snacks or other different dishes presented for eating may allow your employees to develop a stronger sense of beauty, taste and having good experiences overall. The collaboration, conversation, etc. also increases through this.

  • Staff relationships

For Employee Creativity, it is also very important to make them feel important and equal to each other. Therefore, having a hierarchy in an office where there are good relations and ease of conversation between employees and administration would also help these employees in getting inspired. Therefore, this would also help with improved Employee Creativity.

1
Nov

Effective Tips to Be More Productive

In any field you may be working on the ultimate goal to always be productive and meet your set goals. Distractions are everywhere especially in the work place that’s why you need to learn how to plan your day effectively and ensure you are productive at the end of the day. The things that distract us and keep us from being productive are the common things like social media and co-workers.

productive

Effective and Efficient Tips to Be More Productive

The most important thing is to carefully plan the activity of a given day. Allocate time for each activity and make sure you stick to your time table and that you are well organized.  Time management is one of the hardest things for most people hence you need to keep track of time and set reminders on given tasks and appointments. Activities that are simple should be allocated with less time while those that require all your attention need more time. It’s always advisable to start with the tough activities and get them out of your way before embarking on the simple tasks. Have a calendar of all the tasks you wish to accomplish and set a deadline and a time frame and make sure you stick to it.

productiveThe second step is to get rid of all the things that distract you and keep you away from productivity. For most people the things that most distract them are the modern gadgets like smartphones and computers. If your mobile is the biggest distraction while you are working make a point of shutting it off or putting it in silent mode. The computer can be a distraction especially if you have internet connection so disconnect the internet connection as you work to avoid the temptation of logging in to social media like Facebook. Co-workers can be another source of distraction if not well handled. You can let them know when you do not want to be disturbed and hold off any visitor until the work is done. You also need to put priority on the task ahead of you, the task that are very urgent should be given the first priority and avoid delaying unfinished work.

Get organized, you need to keep your desk well organized and store the office tools somewhere where you can access them easily.  The general rule of any office environment is keeping the tools you use most at arm’s reach. Most people will spend more than 5 minutes looking for a letter opener which leads to waste of time and low productivity at the end of the day. Make sure the tools you use are the right tools and also in good working condition.

Learn to file and categorize documents both the hard copies and the soft copies, this will save you time you would have used to search for a document of a file. There are some habits that can lead to less productivity in a given day like regularly checking and replying your mails. Set a designated time to do that, shut off the temptation, you can mute the incoming email notification sound and work as productive as you can!

30
Sep

3 Questions to Ask Yourself Before Becoming a Freelancer

Nowadays, whether it’s because of the general state of the economy, companies cutting down on costs via workforce reduction or simply the desire to take matters into their own hands, a lot of folks are joining the ranks of the freelancing population. Depending on your preference, freelancers are also called work-at-home professionals or independent contractors.

FreelancerThe Good News

If you’re a freelancer, there’s no such thing as:

  • swearing at heavy traffic
  • racing against time to punch in for work
  • commitment to a particular employer
  • corporate politics to contend with
  • some fellow breathing down your neck with every move you make or word you say

If you’re a freelancer:

  • you’re your own boss
  • you can choose your clients
  • you set your own pace and designate your own time

And if you’re an online freelancer, you can take your work anywhere you please, whether while vacationing in Bali, watching the sunset in Santorini or frantically running away from a herd of raging bulls in Madrid.

The Bad News

Freelancing is NOT a bed of roses – a statement that has been used and abused but cannot be emphasized enough. Freelancing has its ups and downs, and it requires a lot of work, especially in the beginning. You would have to diligently market yourself to find trustworthy clients. You might even have to start with pay that’s below industry average just so you can showcase your skills, establish a reputation and an impressive work portfolio. If you’re prepared to swallow all these hook, line and sinker, then, you have a good chance of making it big as a freelancer.

However, before you take the freelancing plunge, here are three questions you might want to consider asking yourself first:

1. Do I have the right tools?

A gardener has his garden tools. A hairdresser has a different set of tools. If your intent is to work online, whether it’s an IBM, a Mac or a Novatech you’ve got, you have to make sure that your computer is always in tip-top shape. That’s not saying you have to have top-of-the-line specs, especially if you can’t afford it. At the very least, invest in hardware (computer, headset, transcription pedal, microphone, etc.) and software that you can constantly rely on.

Oh, and don’t forget, make sure to subscribe with a trustworthy Internet service provider, too.

2. Am I focused and disciplined enough?

When you have the power to choose when to work with no boss hounding you every step of the way, it’s so easy to fall into the procrastination trap. When laziness strikes, everything you’ve diligently memorized about time management flies out of the window.

And even if you’re all prepped up to get things done, social media sites like Facebook, G+, Twitter can divert your attention. Before you know it, time has slipped away and you’re running late for a deadline. How focused and committed you are to accomplish what is expected of you within the time frame agreed upon will determine your success as a freelancer.

3. How long will my cash reserves last?

With freelancing, recognize that the paycheck isn’t going to be deposited to your bank account like clockwork. Your clients will very rarely agree to upfront payments. And you may need to work for a few days up to months on one specific assignment before you receive any compensation. The solution? If you want to make a full-time career out of freelancing, make sure you have enough savings to last for several months (at least six months is ideal). This way, you don’t have to live with just the bare essentials.

Conclusion

Just like anything worth investing your time in, freelancing has its pros and cons. But if after addressing the above questions you’re still all smiles, then, perhaps, it’s time you took the freelancing plunge.

Image courtesy of imagerymajestic / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
12
Jun

Career Management – Quick and Easy Ways To Land a New Job

Because of some undesirable news you heard over the television about massive layoffs and lack of job opportunities, you might feel somehow discouraged to look for a job. But if you are a talented and skillful person, looking for a job is not a problem. There are lot of companies that are looking for talented and skillful people who are willing to commit in helping their companies to grow. If you think you have the qualities that these companies are looking for then you only need to make them find you.

Career

We all know that the competition in job hunting is very tough and you have to make a difference from them to standout. Before you submit your application letter, you should bare in your mind that it is only the beginning of your career.

Useful tips for a better career management

Make some self-reflection

Determine your skills and talents, things you are best in and things you can do. Also, you have to know your weaknesses and limitations. To help you identify these, remember what you did during your previous employment. Make a checklist of your interests, strengths and weaknesses so that you can evaluate yourself in which field you must take.

Set an objective in your career

Identify what is your ideal ob and describe it like what you really wanted to do and how much salary you will earn.

Observe the job market

Determine what kind of job is in demand. You have to be someone whom difficult to replace. Show the people what you can do and prove that you are best on it. Competition is very hard so you have to take an effort to upgrade yourself. Most employers wanted people who are self- motivated and has that attitude of learning new things eagerly.

Do not think unemployment as a vacation

Even unemployed, you must work like an employed one by looking for a job. You must work at least 40 hours a week. Wake up early, have a heavy breakfast, get yourself dress up and go out look for a job. During the interview, be smart and make an impression just don’t overdo it. Making an impression will increase your chance of being hired.

Remember that not all jobs available are being advertised

Most of them are kept hidden and they are just waiting for you to uncover them. Be a vigilant and do some research. Surf the internet, there are lot of websites that offer free registration on posting your resume online. Read newspapers and magazines, and be alert on job fairs.

If you are lucky to be hired then you must treat the company as if it was your own

You will perform better having this in your mind because you will care for the company and give the best service you may give. It does not matter who’s signature is in your paycheck you only have to think that you are self-employed and you responsible in developing the company.

And there you have it, you are now ready to go and find that job you really want. One more thing, remember “Patience is a Virtue”.

If you have something in mind to add to our list of useful tips for a better career management, feel free to share them at the comment section, we will be happy to add it up on our post.

24
May

8 Great Tips On How To Be Successful In Your Career

 

You might have been through  in many hardships before winning the job you have now. But having the job is just a beginning of a long journey in the employment race. For newbies who have just entered the employment world, let me give you some ideas on how to stay happy in your chosen career.

8 Tips for a Successful Career

Making The Call is Making the Progress

CareerOften times, we use to decline or delay things because of inappropriate or other personal reasons. And I tell you this is a bad behavior. If you are just delaying problems, you are building them up and eventually your problems will become bigger and bigger. Of course, nobody wants this to happen. To avoid this circumstances, it is better to face your problem and take actions as early as you can. You do not need to come up with the perfect solution, however, you have to think for a solution that is best for your problem.  Learn from your mistakes and move on.

Reasons to Quit

Problems are everywhere including in your work. However, your ability to handle these problems under pressure and stress is what matters most. If you love your job, give your best to it and do your task satisfactorily. Quitting may not be the best solution for your problem. But if you decided to quit, make sure it is the right thing to do.

Interruption is the Enemy of Productivity

Focus on your work. Do not be distracted by unnecessary things around. Be productive in everything you do no matter how simple these may be. Do not waste your time to unimportant things, remember “time is gold”. Put away things that may cause to be distracted.

Meeting is Toxic

Meetings are one of the distraction one could ever face. The long meetings could take up so much time resulting to the delay of work and less productivity. Emergency  meetings are the worst because they may happen in an unexpected time.

Make Tiny Decisions

Decisions are part of our lives. It is hard too make big decisions especially if it involves not only your life but also the lives of other people. It is advised that you take a closer look of the details and not the whole picture itself. Try to look at smaller aspects so that you would be able to analyze the outcome of your decision. In case you have made the wrong decision you would be able to make adjustments to avoid casualties or if you cannot avoid it, at least there will be less.

Emulate Chefs

Learn to share your thoughts and ideas from others. Because of competition, many are afraid to share their ideas. However, this is not a proper mindset. Teaching our co- workers and subordinates will help build a good working environment. They might even teach you what they know in return. In this way, cooperation is promoted that will lead in more productive working force.

Long Lists Don’t Get Done

Set your priorities.  Making a long list of your daily tasks will not be effective. You may shorten it by grouping these tasks and set them according to your priorities. This will help you avoid confusion and will make your task easier.

Go to Sleep

Though we have to give our best to our job, this does not mean you have to be a ‘workaholic‘. You also have to consider your health. Studies show that people with proper sleep work well, decide effectively and perform their task efficiently.

Being successful in your career is not only measured by how much you are earning or the position you are holding,  but also  on how you influence the lives of the people that surrounds you. Are they happy working with you? Does your boss likes the way you do your job?  And most importantly, are you happy in your chosen career?



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