How to do Business When You Work for Yourself

Written by Chloe Harwood

Working as a contractor is a very different kettle of fish to being an employee. There are many perks, and you can set your own terms. However, there are also drawbacks, such as lack of entitlement to a holiday, pension schemes and sick pay. But many people prefer to work for themselves due to the flexibility involved.

If you want to work for yourself you’re going to need to take a more hands-on approach to proceedings. Have a look at these ideas and make sure you follow them when it comes time to start doing business.

Negotiate a Contract

As a freelancer, a contract is your bread and butter. So it’s important that both you and your prospective clients iron out the creases. You’re going to need to negotiate the work involved in the project and your rate of pay. There may be certain caveats involved in your contract as well. For instance, you might need to provide an alternative if you can’t fulfil the terms of the contract. Make sure you look over it in-depth before you sign anything.

Consult Experts

It might also be a good idea to consult experts. You may want to bring in a team to help with the running of the business. There are certain organisations designed to help contractors run their businesses. This will allow you to cover all your bases, and run your own company efficiently without issues like admin. It’s important to have experts to pore over your contract for you. They can tell you about any issues and instruct you how to avoid IR35. It’s unlikely that you will be familiar with all the relevant areas of a contract. So it’s vital to have people on board to advise you.

Don’t Take on Too Much

It’s important to make sure that you don’t try to take on too much in one go. Bear in mind that you are working for yourself. This means that it’s pretty much going to be you doing the work individually. So you need to work out how long it’s going to take you to do each project. Whatever you do, don’t take on too much. You’ll struggle to complete tasks in time, and this will lead to you having to rush a lot towards the end.

Give Yourself Enough Time

Just like not taking on too much work, you need to be sure you give yourself sufficient time to complete it. Figure out what you’re going to need to do to complete each piece of work, and try to work out how long you think it will take. Make sure you don’t leave the work until the last minute, this will cause a mad rush, and the quality of your work will diminish. You need to leave plenty of time to complete the tasks and go back over the work if needs be.

Always bear in mind that running your own business is much different, and much harder, than working for the man. You’ve got to make sure you know everything involved in the process. So you have to be sure you’re paying the right tax and that your contract is watertight. Use the ideas from this post to help you.

About the author

Chloe Harwood