Avoid 4 Freelancing Mistakes

Making the leap from being a WordPress developer in your spare time or for a boss to going freelance is daunting but exciting. If you’re like me, when you go freelance your focus will be on the work and not on the business side of things. But thinking like that could be a big mistake.

The big mistages are:

  1. Mistake #1: Undercharging
    1. Solution – Work out your rate following this simple process
  2. Mistake #2: No Contract
    1. Don’t work without it because you need to know and agree on what will be done, payment schedule (I suggest weekly invoicing and payment), and what happens if something go wrong
  3. Mistake #3: No Project Brief
    1. Summary of project timelines, details of exactly what will be done, each parties responsibilties, criteria for success, and who does what after project completed
  4. Mistake #4: No Deposit
    1. Some client may push back but stand firm as this is how you work, it is an industry practice, and is part of the contract they signed

Great stuff and you can read all of it at the link below.

Source: 4 Freelancing Mistakes That Are Costing You Cash (and How to Avoid Them) – WPMU DEV by Rachel McCollin

Explain Your Work Capacity To Your Boss

future-proofing-your-design-team-Calculate-your-capacity-by-David-Lesue_791x437We are all expected to do more. Do you struggle to explain to your boss what you are doing and how much capacity you have for those last minute, must do tasks?

Here is a simple model to explain your capacity to your those assigning you work. It is from a video presentation called “Future-Proofing Your Design Team: Three Lessons from an Overnight Rebrand (S5285)” by David Lesue at the Adobe Max conference in October 2015.

How Much Work Can You Do?

Do the math to calculate your capacity.  The formula is,

  1. number of team members
    x
  2. the number of hours planned worked per work per team member
    x
  3. focus percentage

The first part is easy and is the size of your team.  In our example, we assume 3 people.

The second part represents the number of hour per week you can realistically work on planned stuff.  Over time you get better at estimating how much extra work you have to do each week that is unplanned.  You want this as low as possible but be realistic for your situation. In our example, we assume 30 hours of planned work and 10 hours of work that is dropped on us that we must get done this week.

The third part represent the focus or quality percentage.  This means what else is going on that week – is there a holiday or event, or something else (Blue Jays’ playoff run) that could impact the team?  In our example, we assume a 90% focus.

The capacity of the team is 3 people x 30 hours planned x 90% focus = 81 hours planned work.

Overtime we get better a estimating the time it takes to do our work. Now you can use your estimates to layout what you are working on, across all assignments.  As your estimates of planned work improves, you can have more confidence showing how the next big, must do, unexpected task requires something else to slip.  Something has to give.

You will likely experience push back on your estimates and approach but persevere – it will be well worth it.

The entire video can be see on the Adobe Max site in the Sessions on Demand section.

Infographic: How do Millennials spend their time and money?

millennials-spending-power_Canada

(Click image to see larger view)

The actual data on millennials was surprising.  To meet the needs and engage with millennials requires a shift in approach. Most surprising to me was 59% millennials are likely to watch ads if they are short and they are half as price sensitive on car insurance as 35 plus.

Read some of the comments from the post in Marketing Magazine, Infographic: How do Millennials spend their cash?

The post is based on a Google Think Insights infograhic, How Millennials Spend, December 2013.

Sleep Helps Detoxify the Brain – Journal Science

Sleep_Pedrosimoes7Animal research indicates that the brain uses sleep to remove metabolic waste products, including those linked to Alzheimer’s disease and dementia as reported in the journal Science. Sleep is vital and the data keeps coming in to back it up.

Researchers at the University of Rochester Medical Center used advanced imaging technology to examine the brains of mice during sleep. They found that brain cells contract significantly during sleep, expanding the area between cells by as much as 60 percent. This increase in the space between cells enables greater flow of cerebrospinal fluid, increasing the removal of beta-amyloid proteins. The accumulation of beta-amyloid proteins in the brain is believed to be a primary contributor to the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, a leading cause of dementia in the elderly.

Read the summary at Swanson Health Products, Sleep Helps Detoxify the Brain. or read the source summary from the journal Science (Lulu X, Hongyi K, et al. Sleep Drives Metabolic Clearance from the Adult Brain. Science. 2013 October; 342 (6156):373-377. doi: 10.1126/science.1241224.)

[Image source: Flickr: Above, feature]