Empowering the Freelance Economy

How to become an indispensable freelancer

Behaviour scientist and researcher Vanessa Van Edwards reveals tips on how to read people better. Photo Source: Science of People
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If you have ever felt underestimated by a client, colleague or family member, you’re not alone. But if you really hate that feeling, then it is reassuring to know that there are steps you can take to not only stop feeling underestimated but stop being underestimated. Instead, you become indispensable to that very client that was once bringing you down, which will not only help you build your freelance business but how you approach other relationships and situations in your life.

If you haven’t watched a Vanessa Van Edwards Tedx Talk or YouTube video, do it. Van Edwards is the bestselling author of Captivate: The Science of Succeeding with People, translated into 17 languages, and Cues: Master the Secret Language of Charismatic Communication. More than 50 million people watch her engaging YouTube tutorials and TEDx Talk. Her videos and articles can be found on the Science of People site.

The behaviour scientist is a treasure trove of tips that could be life and career-changing. Follow them and see how they can transform how you are feeling and performing as a freelancer.

In this video below and this supplemental online 11-step guide, Van Edwards helps you to understand:

  • why people underestimate you (and why you may underestimate yourself!)
  • the 3 golden rules for becoming indispensable
  • what to do when people underestimate you
  • how to use underestimation to your advantage

Van Edwards starts off by giving you some cues to see if you may be underestimating yourself and how you may be misreading how people perceive you, which is more common than you might think. To overcome this habit, she suggests making what she calls a success file.

What is a success file?

Your success file is a collection of all of your strengths, capabilities, and successes, according to Van Edwards. “These include kind emails, recommendations or endorsements, nice comments, letters and thank-you notes. Every time you look at your success file, it should make you feel powerful and confident. This is your groundwork to never be underestimated!” 

This success file is also going to be great for building and updating your online freelance work profile. Have the endorsements and project examples ready for when a prospective client asks for something about you and your work. Better yet, have examples of this type of information on your freelance website, something you should have, even if you get most of your work via freelance job platforms. Add a video about your services on your site as well as LinkedIn, Instagram or another social media platform where most of your target customers are active.

Grab a cuppa and get your pen and notepad ready to take some notes while watching the video:

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