Written by Michael Howard
Edited by Rebecca Lee
WHY YOU SHOULD MOVE FROM JOB TO GIG
Your dream gig lies just beyond the threshold of your office. It’s out there, waiting for you to find it somewhere in the wild. Far too often, it’s up to you to discover how to go from job to gig on your own. Do you find yourself wishing you could write online content, and get paid for it? Are you wanting your graphics on the box of the next top-selling product? Do your IT Skills have what it takes to, in fact, pay the bills? Gig jobs are the best way to go from job to gig. Gigs span across an increasing job market for clients who meet the demands of your schedule.
1. ABANDON SHIP!
What happens when you realize you are working to create someone else’s dream instead of building your own? You learn what working in a career you don’t enjoy or derive passion from feels like. It’s almost like having a front row seat on a sinking ship. Unfortunately, there’s no string quartet on this ship to ease the tension of watching your time and energy dwindle away. Meanwhile, all you want to do is jump off. Don’t! Not yet, at least. What you should do instead is ease into transitioning from job to gig.
Today’s business world is outgrowing the rigorous 9-5 schedules in favor of flexibility from jobs that allow freelancers to work from anywhere. Freelancers fall under the classification of Independent Labor. This environment is perfect for independent labor seeking the opportunities that enable them to go from job to gig. In 2020, Freelancers will comprise more than 40 percent of the US workforce and continue to grow as full-time jobs become harder to find. Now is the time to adapt and go from job to gig to build the career you want.
The hardest part of the transition from job to gig is conquering your laziness. The best way to do it is by learning how to make the most of your time. Think of every spare moment that you have. How much of that time do you spend building your personal brand? Idle time is perfect because not only are you creating your own success, you’re also moving forward. By building your personal brand, you’re creating the agency that will take you from job to gig. Your personal brand will set you apart from other creatives even if your ideas are similar to one another. It’s important to realize that doing the same thing as other people doesn’t make you a copycat. This just means that someone else has already proven that it works and that there’s a demand for it.
When you create your personal brand, there are essential elements you should focus on that will take you from job to gig. Your profile picture, the content you post, and comments are what demand most of your attention. Your profile picture should reflect the sort of attention you’re trying to attract and should give your viewers an immediate understanding of who you are. The content you post should be the voice that you use to drive your brand and designed to circulate traffic toward you rather than push your audience away. Your comments should be similar but more tailored toward injecting the best parts of your personality into direct interactions with people.
Your personal brand is the cornerstone of how you define yourself to your audience. You will see a tremendous boon just from effectively cultivating your personal brand. Clients will line up in droves for your services and the mission to take yourself from job to gig will be made much easier.
3. LEARN YOUR BUSINESS & BUILD YOUR SKILLS
Are you skilled? Of course, you are, you wouldn’t try to strike it out on your own if you weren’t. But there are some things you need to do that will improve your transition from job to gig. What are these things? Skill tests are another form of credibility you can add to your profile. Upwork.com, LinkedIn, and Flexjobs.com have tests that you can complete to show that you’re caught up on industry standards regarding your line of work. More importantly, once you complete these tests, some will allow you to download .pdf certificates which can be posted to your LinkedIn profile. This will show that you are knowledgeable about your trade that will take you from job to gig.
Remember, when going from job to gig, don’t overlook the skills you already have. It’s easy to feel like your expertise are a dime-a-dozen because they come second nature to you. They’re not. These are the marketable skills that you will use to take yourself from job to gig. Not everyone has writing, graphic design, or IT skills. Knowledgeability in these areas is where being a consultant will boost your personal brand. They may not pay much at first, but they will pay off. People will refer you based on your credibility in your field and the flexibility in your work ethic. Do not underestimate the things you are already good at.
4. STRIKE WHILE THE ANVIL IS HOT
However, the truth is, you should never go from job to gig until you know that you’re able to sustain it. Going from job to gig safely requires security. The trick to this is to hold onto your current job as a stable form of income. Going from job to gig takes time and resources, and the best way to create these is by funding yourself while you get started. Don’t worry, running on the hamster wheel doesn’t last forever. The end goal that will take you from job to gig is being able to match half of your annual salary from your personal business, and the other half from alternate means. This may mean having a second part-time job, but ideally, you want to start offering your services as a consultant in areas you’re already skilled.
5. SORRY RAFIKI…
But the past isn’t just, “the past.” You often overlook the work you’ve completed, but these projects highlight the skills you need to take you from job to gig. Utilizing older projects by creating a digital portfolio, personal website, or blog serves as a showcase of your capabilities. Having your work displayed makes it easier to move from job to gig. Clients are most likely to hire you when they have a visual representation of your skillset. But remember, the most beneficial way to go from job to gig is by leading with the best examples of your work.
No one wants to see the crayon drawings from 4th grade that your parents put on the fridge. They want to look at your very best pieces and peoples’ attention spans are short. Use only the work that you would carry with you into a job interview. A stellar portfolio will take you from job to gig and continue to build on itself with every gig you accept and complete.
IS THIS THE “GIG” FOR YOU?
If you’ve poured your heart into your current career and still find yourself in a rut with it, then the time to act is now. You can start building your brand, sharpening your skills, and cultivating your portfolio. But the choice is yours. Catapult yourself into the gig-career of your dreams. Go from job to gig and find out how rewarding your creativity can be today. One great way to get a headstart going from job to gig is an internship position that utilizes your unique skillset. Go to SuperInterns.com to find out more about how to go from job to gig.