Thriving in the Gig Economy
Speaker and marketing expert, Olga Mizrahi has a new book, The Gig Is Up: Thrive in the Gig Economy, Where Old Jobs Are Obsolete and Freelancing Is the Future. She looks at what it takes to win as a freelancer in a world of increasing choice.
In the book, she shared five tips that help you not to get trapped in the digital marketplace. As I read these tips, I realized that they aren’t just applicable to those freelancing. These five tips are important for us all.
Here are five important ways to be ready to compete:
Keep your resume, portfolio, business cards, website, and portfolio up-to-date.
Just because you’re not looking for a jobby job doesn’t mean you can let your PR slack. Make sure to keep your resume on the cutting edge, put your most recent work in your portfolio, order business cards that reflect what you currently do, and add everything new you do to your professional website. Make sure that your online presence contains: a thorough overview about what you do and why you’re the best at it; your current resume; a list of services and pricing; testimonials and reviews; a past client roster with logos (if appropriate); an introductory video; and a contact page that lets potential customers reach you a number of different ways. When you actually show up on someone’s radar, you’d better make sure they’re seeing you at your best.
Digital Tip: When you show up on someone’s radar, make sure they see you at your best.
Memorize your elevator pitch.
The elevator pitch is what you say to Richard Branson (or whatever billionaire is most interesting to you) when he shakes your hand and casually mentions he’s looking for a superstar. What exactly do you do and why are you the best at it? Learn how to say it in under two minutes. If it’s good, a potential contact will ask you to elaborate. If they’re not interested, then hopefully, your pitch will be memorable enough to pass your name along to the next billionaire.
Practice juggling clients by juggling apps.
If you’re good at repairs, why not keep active profiles on Handy and TaskRabbit? Not only will you be meeting a diverse clientele from different platforms, you’ll also be able to pick up insight about how much people will pay for particular jobs when you strike out on your own.
Be open to new opportunities.
It’ll probably be a long time before you’re stable enough to start saying “no” to offers. Network often and, when a job gets offered, be prepared to accommodate. Realistically, you won’t be able to take on every assignment, but you learn 100% more by squeezing room in your Saturday for a once-in-a-lifetime assignment than you will by not doing it.
You never know at the beginning of a job whether it will be a quick payday or the first day of a years-long partnership. As an employer, I’m quick to decide whether or not someone is a good fit based on how they choose to handle a basic assignment. If I hire a contractor who gives me just the minimum, then I’m not going to waste time giving them a follow-up assignment. If someone gives me gold, however, you can bet I’m going to keep their number. As always, it comes down to knowing your strengths and delivering consistent high-quality work.