I started freelancing over 10 years ago when I turned 16. I was thirsty for knowledge and ready to do whatever it took to impress the people I’ve worked with and show them that there’s nothing I can’t do. “Worked with” is the key word in that sentence. I’ve always considered that working with someone is much better than working for someone and that’s the mentality I had even if the “official” relationship was clearly employer-employee in every regard.
I run a 10+ people customer success team with 0% turnover over the last 18 months. I feel like this is owed in part to my hiring strategy and partly because our company makes work fun and exciting.
In my first years of freelancing I met various groups of hard working freelancers who were working independently but had the same values: have a purpose, work hard, work smart, and don’t stop. I am not talking about working 20 hour days, but about giving 100% when it matters and never cutting corners. The difference between feeling like you are working for yourself and working for a paycheck. For a few months, there was a lot of talk about forming up a “dream team” that will work together for the same goal, but it never materialized due to other commitments. When I started hiring, this is what I based my decision on:
- Is this candidate doing it because he is truly passionate about this or is he just looking for a better job?
- Is this candidate going to have the initiative to go above and beyond or will they wait for the job description and play by the rules?
- Will they be working for me or with me?
Plus, I never settled.
Amazing people who are ready to give it their all are hard to find, but not impossible to find. Wait (and fight) for the right people and your efforts will be rewarded.