How can we prevent the busy works? Let's find out! Working as a freelance graphic designer comes with its ups and downs. Many people only consider uptime, where they can work as content as they want. However, the fun and sunshine only hide the busy work as a freelancer. The career itself is not only about designing and handling clients but also about a busy admin job.
The busy work part is particularly the reason freelancers need proper and smart work management. You are not only talking with freelance clients, but you will need to spend most of the time taking care of the behind-the-screen labor. You have to send emails, answer chats, schedule a client's meeting, follow up on the invoices, and check project statuses.
The career seems pretty simple. However, many freelance workers spent almost most of their time on the busy admin job. If you do spend more time on those activities rather than your main job, that means you need to work smarter. There are some ways to prevent busy works from occupying most of your time. Here are some of the smart tips you can try now.
1. Focus On One Task
One reason why freelance workers get swallowed up with the amount of work is the inability to focus. Even though freelance offers more freedom for the worker, you also need to take care of every labor by yourself. It includes the freelance client and designer relationship. The busy job behind the scenes also becomes part of your smart responsibility.
It is pretty much different from working with a company, where the designer did not handle any freelance client. As a freelance worker, you need to be smart and learn to multitask. It is one of the smart moves to do. However, not everyone can multitask and nail it perfectly. So, prevent the busy work pressure and focus.
From decades ago, many researchers underline that multitasking is impossible to nail. If you want to prevent burnout due to a busy job, you have to be smart, learn it, and experience it. It is the only way professional workers can handle everything, including taking care of the client relationship, order, process, and promoting their job.
If you are new in this career, you need to focus and be smart. It is because taking care of a busy job can absorb your productivity time of around 15 minutes. It can also plummet your task efficiency up to 40 percent and stop your creativity juice. So, try to focus on one task at a time to prevent any burnout from the busy work with your freelance client.
Sometimes, it is better to focus on one task, so you are not getting too busy. It also helps create the best result for your freelance career. But how to do it? Many people are having a hard time due to the self-management nature of the career itself. To prevent busy works, focus on one job, and do not get distracted by your freelance client, try some of these smart ideas.
2. Learn To Say No
Being encumbered due to the overwhelming job and duties is one of the considerations you need to know. In this case, it is wise to learn how to say no to your freelance client. It is okay to decline some new requests to focus on what you got in your hand. The smart idea will eventually decrease the number of busy jobs to do.
You don't need to do many client meetings, take care of the invoice, or worry about the project progress. Most freelance workers should be smart in maintaining their duty, so they can prevent any unneeded multitasking. However, a busy job is not only about job responsibility. It can also include client calls or chats. So, how if you cannot say no?
In this case, the best way to prevent yourself from getting overwhelmed with the demand is to make a status call or chat. Tell your freelance client that you are currently busy and can only accept the request at a certain time. It also gives you a stabler and smart schedule time for the admin tasks, so you always have time to focus or prevent exhaustion.
3. Put Away Your Phone
It might not be a smart solution, but putting away your phone will certainly work. Many times freelance workers are getting distracted due to the call or message from the freelance client. The busy job can get even more disturbing for those who have multiple clients. To prevent losing your attention, put away your phone from the desk.
Determine a certain time for the busy work or admin jobs, such as in the morning or afternoon. It will prevent any kind of distracting action. The smart idea is to focus on giving you time to work better. It will turn into a great helper for people that need intense focus as freelance workers.
You can also mute your phone notification to prevent busy works. Do it for your phone, computer, or any other device that you use. The notification sound tends to make an irresistible urge to stray from what you have on your plate. Somehow, it turns just like an emergency signal in your brain.
A slight beep can disrupt your flow of creativity. At some point, it will prevent you from getting back into a focused state. The idea is pretty smart and easy to do. But to help you run the admin tasks, try to put information about your available time. The designated time should be dedicated to doing all of the busy jobs and working with the freelance client.
4. Make An Availability Policy
Wanting to prevent busy work does not mean you can neglect the responsibility. In many cases, freelancers have to work alone, be smart, and take care of every detail. It includes busy admin jobs, such as handling freelance clients and other meetings. The supposed assistant job is in your hand. So, how to manage it along with your main job?
One of the best ways to do this is to make an availability policy. As said in the previous point, the idea of respecting timing and focus can help you prevent overworking or burnout. It is a smart idea for people that work alone. Sticking to your availability policy also helps freelance clients know that you are working under strict management.
It is mostly done by professionals that do not want to put aside the busy work as freelance workers. Sticking with the schedule also helps freelance clients know your best time to talk to. So, the smart idea circled creating available and unavailable moments. The trick also helps you prevent busy or overcrowded times. However, there are also some considerations.
4.1. Availability Policy
You need to adopt the idea of checking client email or phone at a specific time. It is one of the smart ideas to do a communication practice. Make the routine without any exception. Do it from the start, so you can prevent any burnout, unconsidered freelance client, and busy works. After that, you can consider the availability during the workday or weekend.
It is good and smart if you can stay with your policy about the work schedule. You can make the weekend a free or break time, working but not doing an admin job, or limit your client time. It is also better to determine the available time according to your task amount, busy time, or home responsibility.
4.2. Unavailability Policy
If you can create available time, then you can also prevent busy works by using an unavailability policy. It is the same as saying no to the freelance client. However, you can focus on not taking calls if it is not in a deep crisis. You also need to underline that a smart freelance worker is not always available, but they are smart enough to manage their busy work.
5. Make A Flowchart And Follow It
There are times that freelance workers try all of the smart ideas to prevent the crazy busy job, but nothing works. Sometimes you need to reflect on how you handle the admin duty. Busy work is not something complicated as long as you know how to handle it. Emails, calls, and messages from freelance clients can be burdensome, but they are part of your responsibility.
So, what should you do to prevent it from getting too overwhelming? If you do all of the work by yourself, you can get busy in a matter of seconds. It gets worse if the client is on the absent-minded side. To help your freelance client understand, prevent misunderstanding, and help you look smart, try using a flowchart.
There is time clients keep on pressing some questions about your job. Even though you already tell the process in the freelance contract, it is smart to include a flowchart. You are a designer, so take your expertise to explain your workflow. The use of images for the flowchart is a smart way to make freelance clients understand faster and prevent bothering questions.
By creating a complete and easy-to-understand workflow, at least you already prevent busy works. It will decrease the client will ask again about the process, the progress, and the detailed information. You can even make it appear like a smart infographic that breaks all of the illustrated information way more appealing.
Is it always cut off your busy work pressure or client time? Sometimes it is better to try the smart solution first. The good news is, you don't need to make the infographic from scratch. You can prevent busy work as well as creating a complicated flowchart by using some design platform. There are many templates available to use.
You can do this way to prevent fuzzy freelance clients and busy admin work every time you secure a contract. Include the details of your work. So everyone knows about the process. Giving them road maps also helps increase the understanding of the complexity. It is a smart way to nail information and prevent any worst-case scenario with your freelance client.
6. Use Project Management Platform
Managing all of the work by yourself is not an easy thing to do. It is one of the toughest challenges every freelance worker needs to nail. However, you can also use an online management platform to take note of all of the tasks and projects. It is also a smart management idea if you work with many people or clients.
Some platforms such as Trello, Bonsai, Asana, or Basecamp allow online access. So, you can share the busy work pressure with other workers. Each of the platforms offers slightly different features for managing your project. At some point, the smart idea to prevent busy works can also help you be more organized. You can set a freelance client deadline and use a calendar or reminder.
It also works the same for communication platforms. Underline that you need to take care of your client and ensure the relationship. It is smart to prevent any issues or misunderstandings by keeping communication on top. You can use some popular chat tools for teams or with clients. Be smart when choosing the platform, so everyone benefits.
The smart tips to prevent any misconduct and issues are also a vital part of many admin work. You will find that getting in touch with your freelance client is as important as continuing the project. At the same time, the feature can turn into a great supplement for your freelance career and prevent any misfortunate in the process.
7. Take Advantage Of Automated Response
Another smart idea to prevent busy works is to use automated client responses. It is a good and smart idea to take advantage of an automatic reply tool such as Zendesk. The app will respond to every inquiry you get, including client chat, email, or phone. At least it is a smart model for you who want to put away your phone and other communication devices.
The automatic answer at least brings relief for those who are anxious about not answering your freelance client. It won't prevent any message and not answering it at all. Most of the time, a freelance design job demands a fast response. Instead of moving away from your duty, the automatic will give a smart response.
It is a great way to prevent distractions and avoid losing some clients. However, you need to be smart in designing the automatic answer. You might give the client some information regarding the work and the process. At least, it is also a smart help for you to get some comfortable delay about the email response. So, you can prevent any inconveniences.
8. Commit To Consistent Improvement
Until this point, you might already try all of the smart ideas to prevent busy works. Underline that everything needs time to work. So, try to implement these strategies and keep on trying to improve your job routine. As a freelance worker, you have to be smart in many ways. It includes taking care of the admin jobs and customer skills with clients.
Some strategies to prevent busy responsibility also help to improve your efficiency. You can always add or alter some smart ideas to make them suitable for your work environment and routine. Trying to ask your freelance client to fill a post-project questionnaire is also a smart way to improve your efficiency.
Don't forget to focus but also remember the customer service skills. As a freelance designer, you are a one-man army. Be smart since you will do all of the work. However, it is also essential to prevent burnout and overworking. Learn how the prevent busy job tips affect your work process and commit everything consistently to improve in the future.
9. Hire An Assistant Or Outsourced Tasks
If everything is getting harder to handle, it is time to consider hiring a smart, qualified virtual or real assistant. As a freelance designer, you are already busy enough to take care of the main work. Meanwhile, the busy admin task is something that gives you more pressure. To prevent the worst, you will need a helping hand.
Tasks such as managing client emails, scheduling calls, responding, monitoring processes, and other admin jobs need interpersonal plus organizational skills. You can invest some money in an assistant. You can prevent overworking and free up time for your business or connection by outsourcing virtual assistants.
The smart idea to prevent busy works will be a vital point in your career improvement. It will eventually help you gain more freelance clients, taking care of all of the busy admin work, prevent any other distraction, and get more focus. If you are hesitant to try the tips, you need to remember that you are a freelance designer, not someone who only does busy work.
Freelance is not a job that is only fun and games. It also comes with some smart challenges. Most of the time, the job only takes a small amount of time. However, the busy action for work takes more time. To prevent busy works and getting swallowed, you can focus on one task, make a flowchart, and get help from an assistant or use some work management app.