DISCLAIMER: This is a little bit of a rant, albeit a positive one. I feel optimistic because this year has brought good things, now that I'm back to freelancing. I want to help others achieve the same successes because I am convinced it should be possible and accessible to others.
Software Engineering is booming 📈 and there's never been a better time to start freelancing.
When you are employed by someone, there are always limits, such as:
- A holiday allowance. Don't tell me your company offers the unlimited variety because there is no such thing even if they say so 😉
- A pay structure. Although these limits are increasing with the demand for software Engineers and are at an all time high - companies will limit how much they pay there employees. It's a necessity to running a business.
- Your role. As an employee, unless you fill an executive role you will have little influence over the overall direction of the company. Your job will be defined by your role which comes with limits some of which will be spelled out in your onboarding, some will be unspoken and some boundaries will only be apparent when you push on them.
Of course as a company it's good practice to define these boundaries and as an employee it's helpful to have clear boundaries. For the self-employed none of them apply:
- You can take as much holiday as you please, literally. Flip side is that you only get paid for your deliverables.
- The price for well written software and good consultancy has no ceiling 💰 and therefore your possible annual salary has the potential to be whatever you make it. Think of the highest salary you know and I guarantee there will be someone who makes 2x that salary but spends half the time doing it.
- As a company of one you have sole discretion over where to take it. I found this can be equally overwhelming and freeing.
Let this sink in. Let your dreams be a driver. The road will be long and hard but you can take my word for it - there is a box of highly valuable unicorn poo 🦄 at the end of the rainbow 🌈. I've seen it with my own eyes and recently I think I may be edging closer.
Finally, freelancing is not for everyone. I hope you feel encouraged to consider it, there is no shame in trying it out and going back to a full-time job if you feel it's too risky or too early in your career (as I did before).
Good luck out there and happy Monday! 🙏
PS: 📷 The cover picture is a lady blackbird from my garden, worm in mouth.