Today marks the end of Q1, my first quarter as a full-time freelance writer. Throughout the last three months, I’ve learned and grown a lot.
There is neverending advice to follow in Zuckerberg’s (or Musk’s or Jobs’ or insert_any_successfull_creator_here’s) footsteps. However, I’ve discovered that no person is successful solely due to their own ideas and work ethic. Every successful person is a mixture of their own background, environment, community, support structure, capital, and decisions.
With so many variables involved, it’s impossible to expect the same results as anyone else. We all move at our own pace and take on our own acceptable level of risk. In the end, success finds us all in different ways.
Instead of trying to be someone else, my best advice for new freelancers is to find their own path. If I had to distill it all down to a single catchphrase, it’d be this: Always ask.
The key to success is asking questions of your clients, audience, friends, and supporters.
How can I help?
What is your biggest need?
What’s holding you back?
What are your greatest resources?
Asking questions not only opens the door for a conversation but also brings new information and opportunities.
As a solo entrepreneur, it’s easy to think my ideas are always the best. After all, my dog and only coworker agree with 100% of the decisions I make. But that’s a bad sample and does nothing to help address my skills to others’ needs. If I’m not providing a service needed by my clients, my ideas and skills are worthless.
Always ask questions.
There are never bad, stupid, or pointless questions. The only way to grow and to succeed is to ask.
In the spirit of asking questions, how can I help you or your business?