In my day job as an online marketing specialist, I get to browse through member–only sections of great sites, so that I can formulate more effective marketing campaigns. That’s why I get to access these resources on company expense: my employer knows that if I use what I learn properly, I can make them more money.
With The Man shouldering all costs such as subscriptions, the corporate worker’s advantage in research over the contract worker seems great. But the freelancer can level the playing field. The support may be lacking, but there’s surprisingly a lot you can do on your own.
The fact is that the Internet represents the largest catalog of information available. Whoever has a knack for locating the right data already has an advantage. It may involve typing in the right words in a search engines, keeping track of informative websites like this one, or simply being aware of what people find useful. Finding relevant information that you can apply to your freelance career is easier than you may think, especially since a lot of websites offer their content for free.
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And what about the relative freedom of personal connectivity? Many office networks limit the websites you can visit, a control that simply doesn’t exist if you use your own Internet connection. You get to follow the links wherever they take you, and you won’t end up having to explain yourself to the HR or IT department.
In short, the lack of corporate resources may not be a severe limitation for a freelancer’s development. The Internet is out there to help anyone do anything; anyone who has the hunger to discover new things will learn a lot from the World Wide Web indeed. That’s why freelancers can learn more than corporate workers.
4 Ways to Deal With Repetitive Tasks
It doesn’t matter if you’re a freelance veteran or starting out: you’ll encounter tasks that are repetitive at best, mind numbingly monotonous at worse. Even if they’re boring however, don’t take repetitive tasks lightly. Doing them as promptly and correctly as you can is the way to go.
Get down and dirty. When you’re faced with a repetitive task, just do it. Give up all excuses, stop procrastinating, and cross the rubicon. You’ll find that the hardest part is actually starting the task, and once you get into the groove things will be easier than you thought.
Take your time. The temptation to rush through a repetitive task is there, since you’re practically doing the same thing over and over again. But such a half–hearted approach won’t pay off in the end, because mistakes will eventually creep in. Haste makes waste.
Double–check everything. After you’ve finally finished the task, you probably want to call it a day and give it to the client. But, even if you took your time, nobody’s perfect. Go over everything again, and make sure everything’s perfect. You wouldn’t want to submit sloppy output, do you?
Find a way to reduce the repetitiveness. After, and only after, you’ve finished the repetitive task, find a way to make things easier the next time around. After filling up a spreadsheet with practically the same content, I figured out a way for Excel’s formulas to reduce the drudge work.
Repetitive tasks are a fact of life. But, with these four ways, it can be as equally rewarding as the so–called “creative” projects. Finding ways to repeat yourself in creative and unique ways can be quite an exciting challenge.
So, how do you deal with repetitive tasks?