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Top 5 Skills Every Freelancer Must Have to Succeed

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Freelancing is the process by which one helps a variety of different companies handle certain tasks.

Most people use their freelance skills working at home while some choose to become traveling freelancers, working whenever and wherever they want through the power of their laptop or smartphone.

No matter where we work, as freelance workers it’s important for us to always be on the lookout for ways to improve the skills we have by staying up to date with market trends, taking additional skills training and focusing on our freelance careers.

We must build a reputation that will allow us to get better and better freelance work. We must also focus on marketing ourselves successfully so we can help grow our freelance business and establish credibility as an expert in our field.

Let’s see which five skills freelancers must have in order to do all of this.

top 5 skills freelancers need to succeed

1. Willingness to Work Hard

If you’re going to succeed as a freelancer, you need to be willing to work hard.
Working hard means working longer hours, doing more projects, and sometimes even working weekends. This is something you need to be prepared for.

2. Good Communication Skills

As a freelancer, you’ll need to communicate well with clients. This means knowing how to write clear emails, making sure you respond quickly to messages, and keeping track of deadlines. Good communication skills are essential to success as a freelancer.

3. Ability to Handle Stress

Being a freelancer means dealing with stress every day. You’ll have to deal with difficult clients, tight deadlines, and unexpected expenses. Stress is inevitable, but if you’re not able to manage it effectively, you won’t last long as a freelancer. Make sure you learn how to cope with stress before starting a freelance career.

4. Good Money Management Skills

Money management is an important part of being a successful freelancer. You’ll need to learn how to budget, save money, and invest wisely.

5. Self Discipline

Self discipline is another key skill you’ll need as a freelancer, and it’s especially important if you plan to earn a lot of money as a freelancer. Being self-disciplined means sticking to your goals and following through on tasks. If you’re going into freelance work because you want to earn lots of money, then you’ll need to develop this skill right away.

How to portray your skills in your freelance profile

Freelancer maps have skill areas where you have to list what you are good at and the proficiency and experience to go along with it.

It’s important to show that you have a friendly, professional, and enthusiastic demeanor in your pitches so that potential clients can trust that working with you will be an enjoyable experience for them. For example, you’ll make a better impression not only on clients but also colleagues if you respond quickly to business emails or phone calls, or if you give constructive feedback whenever someone gives one to you.

Person working on their freelance skills on their computer keyboard

How to get started with freelance work

Now that you know what it takes to succeed as a freelancer, let’s look at some ways to get started freelancing.

1. Start Small

One of the best things you can do to begin working as a freelancer is to start small.
Don’t try to tackle everything all at once. Instead, set aside one task at a time. Focus on completing just one thing before moving on to the next. This will help you build momentum and gain experience. Plus, it will give you something to show off to potential clients.

2. Find Freelance Clients Online

Another great way to get started as a freelancer is to find clients online. There are many sites like,, and to post projects and bid on them. You can also use sites like to find local clients.

3. Post Your Resume Online

A third option is to post your resume online. Many recruiters search job boards looking for new employees. So, posting your resume there is a great way to attract attention from potential employers.

Finding potential clients

Word of mouth is one of the most effective ways to find new freelance clients. If someone recommends you to another person, they may become a client. It’s important to remember that not everyone will want to hire you, so it’s worth asking people who know you what they think of you.

Another great way to find potential clients would be to join a community forum where other freelancers hang out. These forums usually have a section dedicated to finding new clients.

Once you’ve found some potential clients, you’ll need to get them to agree to pay you for your services. This can be done in two different ways. The first option is to charge by the hour for a project, and the second option is to charge a fixed price per job.

Final Thoughts:

So, there you go. Those are some of the skills I believe any freelancer must master. Some people may say this can be overwhelming at first, but don’t let that deter you. No one is perfect. It’s better to think of small assignments that build trust with your future clients as opposed to big projects. Freelancing requires skills but it’s also an art form and requires a lot of trial and error before becoming proficient.

Want to learn more about how to start freelancing? Take my free 7-lesson mini-course Get on the Right Path to Freelancing here.


Images by Surface and Damian Zaleski

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. I believe discipline is the #1 skill a freelancer needs. The discipline to work even when they don’t feel like it and the discipline to get projects done on time.

    1. Yes, self-discipline is so important to freelancing. Freelancers need lots of skills that are important to everyone but even more important when you’re working for yourself.

  2. Hello Sabina,

    Freelancing is one of the best and fastest-growing career options for everyone who wants to work from their comfort. Being organized and having discipline is very helpful to keep things steady and help to improve your skills. Thanks for sharing this helpful post.

    Vishwajeet Kumar

    1. Hi Vishwajeet. Yes, organization and discipline is so important when working for yourself as a freelancer, as is knowing how to motivate yourself and be productive. Thanks for commenting!

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