The rapid growth of digital technology in the last 20 years has aided in the proliferation of entrepreneurship across the world. This, in turn, has helped create what is increasingly being referred to as “the gig economy” wherein individuals are essentially running their own businesses either out of their homes, entirely online, or some combination of the two.
Like many things in life, the gig economy has its pros and cons. While there is an unparalleled level of personal freedom and sense of possibility when you are pursuing your own small business dream, this arrangement usually comes with few guarantees. Furthermore, the life of a self-employed entrepreneur is rarely if ever a nine-to-five proposition.
If this sounds daunting, you’re not alone. Yet millions of people still decide to take the plunge into the gig economy anyways. If you’re determined to be one of those people, it’s imperative to devise a strategy for getting through the gig economy without going crazy. Here are some tips for getting started:
As previously mentioned, work progress and productivity will rarely abide by a traditional 8-hour block. Clients will email in the late evening, assignments may not show up until Friday afternoon, and errands crucial for maintaining the business may be dictated by the hours of operation of other businesses. In short, it’s easy to get distracted and wind up getting half of everything finished and getting nothing completely done. The best way to counteract this is by utilizing an online notepad to stay on top of your daily checklist. Such tech has the added benefit of helping to keep goals within sight.
In addition to helping those in the gig economy keep track of their work agenda, digital resources for keeping organized also allow entrepreneurs to stay on top of their own ideas and epiphanies. Far too often, the unstable nature of the gig economy causes entrepreneurs to momentarily put their creative flow on the backburner as they tend to more immediate business concerns. If this is in the form of tossing a college-ruled notebook to the far corner of the desk, the chances of the results of a brainstorming session making their way into operations will be remote. However, if these notes are kept in a centralized cloud space, entrepreneurs can juggle their responsibilities without risking lost research and realizations.
Always be closing (ABC)
It’s a sentiment traditionally found in sales settings and famously discussed by the brutally honest character Blake in the film Glengarry Glen Ross, portrayed by Alec Baldwin: “ABC: A – always, B – be, C – closing. Always be closing. Always be closing!” In essence, it means never be in a position where you’re not working on securing a future gig. Lead generation is inherently a whole lot of misses for very few hits, but doing what it takes to ensure you’re continuing to take swings is critical to success. Otherwise, those in the gig economy may find themselves in a tight spot wherein a week or more has gone by without any income.
Lastly, those in the gig economy need to be prepared to make adjustments to their operations as they go. It’s unlikely you’ll have all the right things in place and correctly guessed where your priorities ought to go at the beginning. Rather, these are realizations which typically take experience to understand. Don’t make the mistake of refusing to learn from your mistakes.
So you want to be part of the gig economy. For many, it’s less a choice and more a reality thanks to the ways in which technology has rapidly changed the way businesses function. Whether or not it’s always been your dream to manage your own business and make your own way, the path to success is one wherein an individual is willing to adapt to unconventional workflow. If you can do this, there is likely no limit to where the gig economy can take you.