career

Jenn Marie Writing & marketing Elance

Jenn Marie Writing & Marketing on Elance

This page does not exist.

Today, Elance removed my profile from their site. I still am unclear as to why they did that, but at this point I don’t really care. It is just one site on the Internet, and not crucial to the success of my business. Unfortunately, many online freelancers are not as lucky.

Take, for example, the freelance virtual assistants working through the site Zirtual. When the website suddenly shut its doors, not only did the company’s employees suffer from sudden layoffs, the freelancers using the site lost access to their clients. Desperate clients went searching for their freelancers via social media while copycat sites immediately tried to sign up abandoned VAs. The employees have started to take action as well, with a lawsuit.

Unfortunately, this is the type of behavior I’ve begun to expect on the Internet. Online websites, such as Elance and Zirtual, or even Facebook for that matter, have no allegiance to their site visitors. Their explicit purpose is to make money off of the use of their site. When that is no longer occurring, the site vanishes – with no commitment to those using the site.

That is why I knew my Elance page was going to disappear in a short amount of time – not because I had done something wrong, but because I was not making the website money. So when announced earlier this year, that the site would be shutting down, and all freelancers were being transitioned to Upwork, I knew that meant all profitable freelancers.

So I am not at all surprised, but I am still a little sad to see my profile go. I put a lot of time into creating wonderful experiences for my clients, and it showed in my reviews and ratings. The fact remains, though – Elance owned those reviews, although I earned them for them. So as that site is slowly erased from the internet, so goes the written record of my time there.

That’s okay, though because it leaves more room for everyone else.

I envision a freelancing website that does not hold individual’s livelihoods hostage. It should be a site that connects freelancers with the clients that want to work with them. It should be easy to use, moderated for scams, and supportive to new freelancers. It should promote top performers while still having a community feel. It should be everything that Elance was not.

Knowing the internet, it will only be a matter of time before something like this exists.

ReBlog Sunday: The One Thing That Can Ruin Your Freelance Writing Career

I generally run very far away from any article that begins with “The One Thing”, but for this one I couldn’t help reading. In this post, freelance writer Elna Cain talks about how she nearly ruined her freelance career with one single mistake… and it has little to do with writing.

I’m sharing this for anyone who’ve ever doubted their ability to freelance.

http://innovativeink.ca/blog/what-can-ruin-your-freelance-writing-career/

Screw Your Job, I’m Going at It Alone

What motivates someone to work as a freelancer? I think that it often isn’t an abundance of confidence or any type of a business plan. No, the decision to freelance can be similar to the inspiration of invention- based on a necessity.

Many freelancers go at it alone because they need to. Perhaps they needed to find a job and one suited to their skills wasn’t available. Maybe they are unable to work in a corporation due to discrimination, lack of access, or personal choice. There are even some people that choose to freelance because their abilities are too unique to fit a traditional job role. Basically, freelancers go at it alone because they have to.

Many times I think about what motivated me to start freelancing. Although my current situation is rather new, technically, freelancing was my second job. I began freelancing at The Charlotte Post as a sales person. It was my second job (while in college) after a 1 year part-time career in telemarketing. It quickly grew into a writing position.

At first I didn’t understand the big deal of having my own route, my own customers, and my own tax liability. It wasn’t strange because my father had lived that way my entire life. It wasn’t until my next job in computers that I realized the difference. While beginning my experience in technology sales, I longed for the emotional reward that I received while freelancing.

Working for one of the largest computer manufacturers in the world had its benefits for sure. I received industry training in computer hardware, everyday people considered me an expert, and there were the benefits of course. But, what that job didn’t offer – one that I’d always received while freelancing for the Post – was emotional gratification. I needed the reward from doing a good job, and while my customers regularly gave it to me, my company never did.

I moved from computer hardware, to cell phones, to software, to online retail- all the while staying close to those who’d validate my efforts (the customers). Though my regular jobs fulfilled a financial need, deep down, I wanted something more. I felt like I had a job- I wanted a career.

So I got back into freelancing- only a little at first, then completely at one point while working in event marketing. I was happy, but society frowned upon my decision. Believing I was a failure because I found no joy in my fortune 500 jobs, I tried it one more time… this time staying 3 years- only to crash harder than I’d ever crashed before.

I now know I was meant to be a freelancer- I was meant to explore and build using all of my talents, not just the ones the job entailed. My career was doing what I was passionate about- whatever that may be- and supporting my family with it. Isn’t that the ideal?

I definitely understand that everyone isn’t designed to be a freelancer- but those that are, should give up trying to fight it. I have.

Now, I no longer work; I finally have a career.