Thursday, November 15, 2007

Classic Boho Self Employment Screed Continues

Here's yet another reprise of my early posts on the self employed life:

The Big Picture: Building and Sustaining a Career

It’s actually pretty easy to succeed as a self employed bohemian if you are obstinate and consistent. This simply means showing up, day after day, week after week, year after year. You will develop a reputation for being reliable, and your clientele will grow over time. Satisfied clients will recommend your product or service to others. Sure, you will execute an ongoing marketing program to tell the world that you are in business, but most of your new clients will come from recommendations. As you hone your skill in executing your job, you will realize more and more that your real job is the successful management of your relationships with your clientele.

Whether your small business is an end in itself, or a stepping stone to some grander design, it is possible to create a very good job for yourself. You can strive to create decent working conditions for yourself, at decent pay. You will want to charge enough to buy at least basic health insurance, and you will want to open some sort of retirement account and dump a little money in it on a regular basis.

Just as you build equity in a house by paying a mortgage over time, you build equity in your self employment career by showing up, doing a good job, and treating your clients and yourself with respect. Equity in a self employment position is certainly an intangible, and is hard to measure; but from where I sit, it provides a very real source of income and control over my life that I can rely on.

If you are cut out for bohemian self employment, you know who you are. You know you do not want to work in a corporate setting. Some of you have tried it, and have experienced the horror. You know you do not want to work for the government, or in a bureaucracy.

I am here to tell you that you can and will work for yourself, and you will succeed on your own terms, and in your own time. You will experience set backs and disappointments. So get a temp job for a minute if you have to. But never, ever give up. You know, deep down, you are not capable of being any thing other than a perfect example of your own fine self. You may as well face it, and give yourself wholly over to the life you know you were born to live. Good luck!

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