Learn New Skills - Professional Development for FreelancersDec 07, 2021
Professional development is nothing new. It’s been around since before people used Blackberry’s and fax machines were all the rage. What is new is the growing number of freelancers in today’s workforce. For us, professional development looks a bit different than it did back then.
For most freelancers, professional development means leveling up current skills. But for me, when I think of professional development, I think in terms of what’s going to increase my market value. And that’s where learning a new skill can have a major impact.
When I started out freelancing I wanted to work with course creators. My strategy was to look into what courses those creators were taking, and then take them myself.
This strategy has a two-fold effect.
The first was that by taking the course myself, it would save my potential client money right off the bat. By hiring me, they’re not only getting a qualified freelancer, but they’re also saving themselves the entire cost of the course.
The second benefit is that I came to them skilled in the exact things that they need help with. Instead of having to ‘catch me up’ or train me on their specific platform, I could hit the ground running. If you’ve been freelancing for any length of time then you understand how valuable this strategy can be.
Sure, this can seem financially daunting, especially when you’re first starting out. I’ve spent thousands in courses and I attribute those courses as the foundations to my success. The skills I learned from those courses translated directly into marketable skills my clients wanted and needed.
Aside from taking courses, another area of professional development I like to indulge in is reading books centered around freelancing and listening to podcasts. The good thing about both of these is that I can listen at my convenience and learn as I go. I find that rounding out my professional development with books and podcasts, allows me to see any holes in what my clients are needing.
The bottom line is that you have the freedom to make your professional development look however you’d like. I hope that I’ve been able to shed some light on how I approach it, and it helps you along your journey.
And if you’re looking for more ideas to continue your professional development, join Freelancers Aligned! We hold in-depth workshops targeting a variety of topics from client management to finances, as well as a member forum, newsletters, and more! And the best thing - it’s completely FREE! Click here to join!