Most freelancers are well aware of the importance of a strong portfolio, worthwhile contacts, and good communication with clients. But there are a lot of other pitfalls that a freelancer can fall into; after all, at times you need to be a good designer, businessperson, and accountant all in one. Make sure your business starts on the right foot by avoiding these five mistakes many beginners make:
1. Working for Free
Be better than spec work.
You may feel tempted to take on speculative work, either as a means to prove yourself, or in hopes of scoring big on a lucrative account. But taking on unpaid work devalues your effort, and puts you in the position to be badly taken advantage of; clients have been known to rip off your designs without giving you the job. Respond to requests for spec work with a firm refusal.