I’m celebrating a work anniversary – five years at Nicola Young Copywriter.
That’s according to LinkedIn anyway and the lovely followers who sent me a message of congratulations on the day.
This milestone passed me by because I’ve been copywriting for much longer than that, but it wasn’t until my youngest son started pre-school five mornings a week that I set myself up as a freelancer proper, with my own website.
I’m thankful that after five years I’m busy most weeks with regular work. When a big one-off contract comes in, it can get super busy, but the nature of freelance work means I get breathers in between.
The downside to that, of course, is the irregular pay. As a freelancer, I never know how much I will earn, which makes it difficult to rely on this type of work as a way of life. That can be tough, but there are perks that make it all worthwhile:
I get to work from home
With three children in three different schools, I can’t tell you how much stress this takes away from my life. I need the flexibility of being able to fit in my hours around my children or I don’t think I would survive. I believe very strongly that more employers should give their employees the option of homeworking. To take away an element of pressure from those with young families would increase productivity and employee satisfaction no end.
I get to set my own hours
I’m efficient and I always get the job done on time. No one I’ve worked for can complain about that. I don’t charge by the day though, because I don’t work a nine to five, but that’s not a problem as charging by the job works out better for not just me, but the client too. It means we both know where we stand up front and there are no hidden charges.
The benefit of having flexible hours is that I can make sure the children get to and from school, walk the dog and even catch up with a friend for coffee. As long as I get my hours in during the day, it doesn’t matter when I do them. The downside is that I’m never fully in ‘work mode’: an example of this is when I went to a meeting the other week about a project. When I came home, I quickly made a batch of cookies before picking my son up from school. You might find me in Sainsbury’s doing the weekly shop after I’ve just finished a few hours at my desk. It’s multi-tasking at its finest!
It’s taken some time, but my hard work is paying off as more people contact me via my website asking for my copywriting services. I’ve just ‘Googled’ you, someone said to me the other day and on that basis alone, asked me to do some work for him. My website is such an important part of my job as without it, I would be invisible. With testimonials from previous clients, examples of my work and a straightforward, no nonsense approach that says, this is what I do and this is who I am, people tell me they’re happy for me to do the work for them on the basis of this alone.
So thanks, LinkedIn, for alerting me to this milestone in my copywriting career. Without you, I wouldn’t have taken the time to reflect on how far I’ve come in the last five years. I’m always telling people how I love to write. You only have to look at the evidence – two blogs and a soon-to-be-published novel – to see this. Writing isn’t everyone’s thing. They find it difficult, tedious, time-consuming. That’s where I come in. Putting words together is a creative process that tells a story, no matter what business you’re in and I find immense satisfaction from being able to do this. I’m lucky to be able to do something I love and I hope to be able to continue doing so for many years to come. Here’s to the next five years.
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