Archive for the ‘freelance’ Category
Posted by Vicki Moulton on December 14, 2009
One of the biggest challenges facing business owners who work from a home office and also have small children to raise (like yours truly) is setting aside enough time for handling a business project from start to finish. When interruptions are the norm–whether it’s phone calls, doorbells, or diapers–that means you’re always falling behind.
What business can thrive on being behind?
So here’s my answer: sometimes you just have to shake things up. In my case, that meant finding offsite childcare a couple days a week so that I could dedicate a specific number of hours per week to running the business. Instead of juggling family and business simultaneously, I decided to focus on one issue at a time, at least for a couple of days per week, to restore some of my sanity.
While it’s tempting to think about how this might make me a less-than-perfect parent, I can’t waste time on that. My business deserves quality time and attention, just like my daughter. And when it thrives, so does my family.
Posted in communications, freelance, marketing | Tagged: home office, interruptions, juggling family and business, shake things up, small business, time management, to-do list, work-life balance | 1 Comment »
Posted by Vicki Moulton on November 16, 2009
I am pleased and proud to help announce the launch of JennyNess Designs, the new freelance design business of my incredibly talented logo designer and fellow networking colleague, Jenny Ness Decker!
Here’s Jenny in her own words:
I’ll finally be leaving my day job in January to launch a new career. I’ve published an online portfolio at jennynessdesigns.com. I’m looking for job opportunities (both full-time positions and freelance jobs) so please keep me in mind if you (or someone you know) are in need of design services.
I am more than happy to provide a recommendation for Jenny’s work. She’s the best!
Full disclosure: Her new website features a bit of marcomm direction and messaging help from Movick Marketing. (Glad to help, Jenny!)
Posted in communications, freelance, MarComm, messaging, networking | Tagged: artist, colleague, design services, freelance, Jenny Decker, JennyNess Designs, job leads, launch, logo, MarComm, networking, online portfolio, recommendation, website | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Vicki Moulton on August 14, 2009
Ever heard of something called “free work”? It’s a freelance-style, resume-building type of career move that is completely different from the traditional unpaid internship, according to a new eBook I came across today called “The Recession-Proof Graduate” (by Charles Hoehn).
While this is written from the Gen Y, new-grad perspective of an early 20-something who clearly had enough cash on hand to work for free that first year out of college (which most don’t, especially in a recession), I must admit that there’s something intriguing about the concept. Who wouldn’t want to do work that’s fun and interesting, on your own terms and your own schedule, without the stress of competing with the faceless masses to become the next underpaid, overworked office drone?
Been there, done that.
Here’s a good intro to this concept, along with a link to the interesting eBook:
Seth Godin’s Blog
P.S. Many thanks to my always-resourceful college classmate, colleague, and good friend Louise Griffin for passing along this great link!
Posted in freelance, marketing, networking, writers | Tagged: book, Charles Hoehn, faceless masses, free work, freelance, Gen Y, internship, network, office drone, recession-proof, strategy, website | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Vicki Moulton on June 12, 2009
I’ve been a longtime member of a private, mostly virtual network of 250+ DC-area freelancers who specialize in various areas within the field of communications (writers, editors, technical experts, web programmers, designers, marketing experts, etc.). A colleague of mine from a freelance gig back in 2000 recommended me for membership, and I did the same for another colleague with whom I’ve worked since the mid-90s.
I haven’t made it to very many of the monthly meetings, as worthwhile as they are, because the location is not close enough to my home office to make it worth the commuting time (usually midday on a Friday, which tends to be deadline day). But I’ve stayed in the group because of the many virtual benefits of being an email away from a few hundred great minds with lots of great advice on all things freelance.
Today I received an email from the group’s founder and most passionate cheerleader, explaining what membership in the group means, how it works, and how it has enhanced everyone’s professional experience. I thought it was so concise and well-written that I wanted to post it here (sans identifying information, of course).
Membership can be extended to anybody any of our members feel (1) would benefit from such membership and (2) would be a benefit to the other members.
(1) [The group] differs from other lists and online groups in that we are a community. Some of what we share online is strictly business – rates, job leads, articles. Much is not – announcements of personal triumphs, pleas for pet causes, the occasional bit of humor. All is offered warmly and accepted graciously, because in [our group], everybody is somebody’s friend.
(2) [The group's] only criterion for membership is that the person being recommended be someone whose work the sponsor can vouch for. That criterion gives us the comfort of knowing that everybody in [the group] is considered by someone else to be a pro…
We are an unusual group, and the reason we work so well is that everyone here wants to be here and wants to contribute to the group’s continued success. It’s quality (of relationships and interactions), not quantity (of member rolls), that we’re all about.
Amen to that.
Posted in communications, freelance, MarComm, marketing, networking, writers | Tagged: colleague, communications, DC-area, editors, freelance, great minds, job leads, MarComm, marketing, meetings, members, membership, network, networking, quality, relationships, specialize, sponsor, virtual, writers | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Vicki Moulton on June 10, 2009
I am about to launch (or should I say relaunch) my business by announcing the existence of this website to the wider world. There are a few more tweaks that must be made, items and links to be added, content to be updated, images to be fine-tuned… but otherwise it’s good to go.
This is something I’ve wanted to do for years, and now I’m finally on the cusp of it becoming a reality. It feels good to be moving toward a new goal.
Posted in communications, freelance, MarComm, marketing, writers | Tagged: communications, DC-area, freelance, goal, launch, MarComm, marketing, small business, website | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Vicki Moulton on April 1, 2009
That seems to be the question in the freelance community right now. To become a regular user of the ubiquitous Twitter, announcing my actions in short little quips to a legion of followers (yes, a legion), I think I should have something interesting to say.
If Twitter is to be used as a marketing tool, there should be obvious value for me and my audience. At the moment, all I’m hearing about Twitter seems to be just a bunch of noise.
I do update my status on Facebook regularly, but I try to say something either funny or interesting about what I’m doing. And at least I know my audience on FB–people I’ve personally approved to see my profile and read my updates. Twitter opens up that audience to just about anyone online.
I don’t think I’m ready for the world to know everything I do, right when I do it. That just doesn’t seem like a smart move. Yet.
Posted in communications, freelance, messaging, networking | Tagged: audience, communications, Facebook, FB, freelance, tweet, Twitter | 1 Comment »
Posted by Vicki Moulton on March 19, 2009
My barter arrangement–logo design/color palette for web marketing writing–is in full swing, now that I’ve received the first draft of logo designs. There are many more to choose from than I was expecting, and the different styles and colors are tantalizing. I want to choose wisely, so I will take my time and maybe even poll (anonymously of course) some fellow freelancers to get some other opinions on what speaks to my audience. Stay tuned… The winning logo will appear on this blog!
Posted in communications, freelance, MarComm, marketing, messaging, writers | Tagged: artist, audience, barter, color palette, freelance, logo, marketing, website | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Vicki Moulton on February 26, 2009
Here’s a dilemma: what does one do with the client who can’t keep track of its own deadlines?
In the past, when I’ve attempted to cover my behind by pointing out that the client hasn’t provided the necessary materials in order for me to meet the original deadline, this information has been met with a revised timeline and occasionally a thank-you-for-pointing-that-out email. My most recent experience with this kind of communication was met with a terse I’m-too-busy-to-worry-about-deadlines response, implying that I was nuts to care about such a trivial thing as a project deadline.
That kind of tap dance really gets my dander up. When you give me a deadline, and I agree to it, until you tell me otherwise, I will stick to the original plan. My professionalism prevents me from letting deadlines slide, even if the client is the one doing the sliding.
Is it too much to ask for the client to just send a quick we’re-moving-the-deadline email, with details to follow? For some clients, apparently it is.
(P.S. The obvious question here is why do I care more about my clients’ deadlines than they do?)
Posted in communications, freelance | Tagged: client, deadlines, professionalism, project, timeline | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Vicki Moulton on February 23, 2009
Taking a weekend off from real life by going somewhere else can inject a jolt of energy into the creative process. I visited a college friend for two days, setting my own life’s details aside and immersing myself in hers. Listening to her tell stories, meeting the characters in her life, watching the world go by through her car windows, I found some great material for a short story, maybe a novella. (It would only be loosely based on actual people, of course…)
The momentum wave I was riding before the weekend took a little break while I was on my short vacation. But I was constantly thinking about how to apply life’s observations to this creative endeavor called writing, and how that might apply to networking to promote my business. That doesn’t sound very relaxing, does it? And yet, I came home refreshed and ready to get to work this morning, full of ideas and momentum.
Lesson learned: getting out of town can recharge the batteries.
Posted in communications, freelance, networking, writers | Tagged: creative process, momentum, networking, promote, relationships, vacation, writers | Leave a Comment »