[Risk-Y Business] Lessons in Freelancing: Create concrete standards

From my previous Risk-Y Business post, I announced that I was going to get serious about my craft and take my skills and desire in my own hands. I’ve ventured out and started freelancing in the Marketing arena (check out www.dniccolecoleman.com – Shameless plug I know).

As my journey continues, I have already had a couple of bumps in the road but I have to say that these bumps only drive my ambitions more! I’ve been told by everyone that you have to prepare for those lows because they will make the highs all the more better.  So to keep me focused, I’ve come up with my own motto:

Don’t trust it, until they bust it. Or you will cuss it!

Let me break this down real quick; don’t trust that you have the business until they bust out their signature on the dotted line or you will be pissed! Basically, you must have some concrete standards in place for both you and the client. My standards now follow the “sign, seal & delivery” method (you won’t find this in a book because this is straight from DNC’s mind).

  • Sign – Make sure that the contact for your services is signed so that all expectations are known. Not just their expectations for you but what you expect from them as a client.
  • Seal – Make sure the check is sealed in the mail. Previously, I’ve toiled with the traditional retainer idea but I’ve come to the conclusion that until you have a rapport with your client, it’s ok to ask for funding initially, even if it is just a certain percentage.
  • Deliver – once you get the first two completed, you must deliver to their expectations. I suggest delivery more than want they want. Not in quantity but in quality.

Well that is today’s lesson.  Remember: Don’t trust it, until they bust it. Or you will cuss it! Now go do something great this Friday!




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