On the surface, freelancers don’t look so different from employees: you assign them projects and pay them for their work. But if you consider how freelancers will interact with you, how they complete projects and even how they are paid, freelancers are a lot different than employees. It can require a shift to start working with freelancers, rather than trying to manage them like employees — but if you can build up a strong freelancer-client relationship, you can get much better results than trying to have an employee complete the same project.
My experience as a freelancer
Back in the mid 90s, I had been in the corporate world for several years when I decided to go out into the wild… to cultivate my knowledge and experiences and to learn how others ‘do’. Since then I have gained a lot of experience from a great variety of sources.
You might have noticed it already, but I really enjoy living the freelance life. The freedom and the flexibility that I now have allows me to look at things differently. I may not have the security that comes from a steady paycheck, but as one commenter noted a while back, it’s unlikely that all of my clients are going to disappear at the same time, and I will always have the ability to go out and find new clients. But as much as I enjoy this lifestyle, it’s not something I see myself doing for the rest of my life.
But, is my performance really different?
During my years as freelancer, or independent contractor, I however continued very linked to the corporate world through my projects with major companies, especially in the banking and insurance sectors as well as NGOs.
Albeit not as an employee per se, I have been very deeply involved with a handful of my clients by working in interim positions within their organisations. Thus, at the European Marketing Confederation (EMC) I had been acting for 4 years as International Projects’ Manager (coordinating activities among its 18 member associations across Europe) after having served 3 more as Member of the Management Board; at Fundació ACAI-TLP (a Barcelona-based association dedicated to support of BPD patients) I have been acting as Marketing and Communications Director launching and coordinating their main project SIN-LIMITE aimed to the Spanish-speaking countries; at Grupo Cajastur, I managed the development and launch of the bancassurance line of products for 18 months and at Caixa Tarragona, I contributed for over 2 years to enhance the set up of their insurance operations.
Thus, whether as an employee or as a freelance -albeit work terms are necessarely different-, my performance, dedication and outcome are the same.
So what am I looking for?
Because I have worked in big and small companies, I have served different industries, I have been here and abroad, I have had different degrees of involvement with my clients, I have been an employee and a freelancer… that is why me, Enric Massó, am open to a variety of work arrangements to suit the requirements of my future client/employer.
I’m now in my early 40s and what I am looking for is:
commitment, professionality, stability, responsibility, trust, ambitious goals,
independence, support, resources, long(er) term objectives, recognition,
rewards, respectfulness, ethics, initiative, persistency, courage,
will to win, can-do attitude, team building
if your company or organisation can offer all of the above, then… freelance or employee?… that’s up to you!