The disadvantages of being a self-employed contractor or freelancer


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Getting a Job

Plateau de La Godivelle - 05-05-2007 - 13h17In the spirit of getting stuck into the difficult jobs that you hate, but which still need doing, Ground Zero‘s Jack Forester talks about some of the disadvantages of being self employed.

First, it can be very lonely starting out in business, especially if you are doing it alone. You tend to spend the majority of your time at home in front of the computer or on the phone and rarely meet anyone new, apart from the occasional meeting or networking event. Gone are the office parties and the honey who works along the corridor, as are lunch breaks in the local park – if you are working from home you generally eat lunch there too and then get a phone call which means you rarely leave the ‘office’ all day!

Secondly, everything ultimately becomes your responsibility, even the jobs you hate doing. I for instance, run events, so if I suspect attendance to an event might be a bit low, the person who will have to go and distribute flyers and posters in the rain, is me, unless I am able to find and pay someone else who is going to do it properly!

Thirdly, there’s the ongoing burden of needing to sort out your own accounts. When you start out this can be a very daunting prospect. I personally was in denial for the first few months of business and kept putting it off in the hope that the pile of receipts and invoices would somehow sort themselves out, but eventually came round to realising that I had better do something about it before I got in to trouble!

next: The ADVANTAGES of going freelance

Creative Commons License photo credit: Panoramas