Freelancers take jobs from around the world and provide services to different clients, which in turn pay them for their expertise, creative work and the resources they might have.
But it can get lonely sometimes, right?
There are many benefits in the freelance community, like being independent workers, being able to choose working hours and free time, writing or creating diverse media for clients, and so on. But making friends or feeling like part of a community is sometimes a bit difficult to find.
Creative professionals feel the need to be a part of a freelancer’s union, a community for freelancers or just the need to connect with other freelancing people as part of their network.
The good news is that there are networking opportunities for freelancers to connect to each other, as there are many freelancing communities.
The support system is a place, more often than not online communities, where freelancers from different backgrounds with different skills can easily find fellow freelancers, can talk about opportunities, spark events, create new projects, services, marketing, education, career opportunities, and many more aspects of the industry.
Community, mentors, and opportunities to create
Freelancing communities can become places where we can meet other freelancers, talk about the difficulties of the freelance business with someone who’ll understand, look at job boards, perhaps read some personal stories that are motivating, share jobs and good vibes, and purely connect with another person, especially when we feel that we need that connection.
Communities can have many forms, as they can take place on a website, perhaps in online meetings, in a chat, on Facebook groups, or anywhere else in the online world.
Having the companionship of other freelancers can improve one’s motivation in writing or creating content in the case of graphic designers.
An online community could be seen as one of the best freelancing communities. But only if it helps the people there to do a few things about their freelancing situation:
providing some resources to be used, especially for the newer people in the industry,
creating opportunities to learn about marketing and advocacy, health insurance, how to make money online,
share tips about money, interest, careers, and similar industries,
perhaps share stories about workshops, projects, and businesses,
help each other in finding jobs through a job board and just chat about what it means to be a freelancer.
It might not be easy to find such a place, but there are many freelance communities, for example, on Facebook groups or on Hubstaff talent, so even though it might prove to be some work until they find the best one for themselves, freelancers can try to join a community, see what is the general vibe of the network and either remain there or continue their search through the many communities.
Finding a freelance mentor is a specific kind of networking link in this business, as it might make the job of freelancing much easier.
To first find and then choose a mentor, the freelancer has first to search for communities where other freelancers offer their services, then see if someone offers mentorship programs.
After looking through reviews and perhaps asking other freelancers about this specific person, a mentor can be simply hired for a determined amount of time to offer guidance to the freelancer, to write to each other, and even invite him or her to a group of private members on their site.
What can we do to start or join a support system?
Now that we know the opportunities created by a freelancers union, let’s see what can be done by the freelancers themselves to either join one or create such a network from the start.
If we’re going to join an already existing support system, it’s essential to search first on Google or other search engines to see what is available.
For example, freelance writers might want to look in places where there are freelance writing jobs offered and, from there, continue searching on a blog post, a Facebook group, or some other place that offers opportunities to freelance.
What is important in this case, and the members of these communities know it, is to adapt.
As freelancers, we are free to choose if we want to join an already existing community or if we want, to create our own.
In this second scenario, it’s essential to understand what needs we have while we freelance and then create either a website, a blog, a Youtube channel, or some other kind of virtual space on a platform, then advertise it to the already existing communities.
What features did we add to our community? What opportunities would the people need to be able to help them? Are we reaching the people with our system? What is essential is to find what we need as freelancers in one way or another.
To sum it up, a community and a system are vital in the long term for freelancers, thus, after reaching a point where human contact and companionship are needed, there are two main choices: to join an existing community and adhere to their organizing principles or create a new community from scratch and see where it will go.