How to negotiate with clients (or anyone) like a pro this year

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Negotiations always give me the jitters. Am I proposing a fair deal? Am I about to get swindled? Should I look elsewhere? Am I going to lose this project? Is this client going to be more stress than they’re worth? Etc. etc. I think partly that’s because I’ve never been good at reading people; maybe I’m too honest, naive, or just plain oblivious. But I also believe it’s because the art of negotiation is rarely taught in school (no matter

This is what it means to be a freelancer (that no one else will ever understand)

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Walk into any business, and you can almost instantly spot the owner. It’s not always their clothes, either. Some dress with more authority, but that’s not always the case. Sometimes they’re the ones in the tie-dye and sandals. And age doesn’t give it away either, as they’re usually not the oldest in the room. How can you almost always instantly spot the owner? What is it? Because if it’s not the clothes or the age, it has to be something else.

How to avoid distractions when working from home

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Working from home has many perks: more time and money otherwise spent on commuting, flexible schedule, and an opportunity to combine work and family life. All this comes at a price – some people find it extremely hard to avoid distractions when working from home. Switching from ‘home’ mode to ‘work’ mode is probably the biggest challenge faced by home-based entrepreneurs. If your house can be as chaotic and crazy (in a mostly fun way!) as mine, setting boundaries with

11 Ways to make more money from your business in 2015

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Cash. Money. Moolah. Coin. Pennies. Dimes. Dosh. Dough… Call it whatever but let’s be honest…it can be the painful, blistering bane of your existence if you’re not careful. How many nights do you lie awake staring at the ceiling stressing about how to pay your suppliers, staff, taxes, rent, house, car payments, school fees, heck even just to put food on the table sometimes — worried sick about where the next lot of cash is coming from? Countless, right? Me

GDB is unplugging & you should too (here’s why)

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When I was very young, I used to read the comics in the Sunday newspaper (an activity that I’ve unfortunately discontinued). I fell in love with comic strips like Calvin & Hobbes, Pickles, Baby Blues and others. And for a short moment in life, I even aspired to be a comic illustrator professionally. One day, when I was about 14, the top half of the Sunday comics in the newspaper were replaced by a touching article about a cartoonist and creative who

6 Habits of Super Productive Freelancers

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There are many benefits to freelancing, including the ability to set your own hours and rid yourself of a long, boring, and expensive commute. (Forgot how awesome freelancing is? Read this.) However, one of the downsides of being your own boss is that no one’s there to check in on you. It’s all too easy to lose focus, which only harms you and your business. Especially during the holiday season, it’s harder than ever to carve out hours of productive

Why repeatedly bending over backwards for a client can actually hurt your relationship

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Do you have that one client (okay, maybe three?!) that’s habitually totally unorganized and needing something big last week? The one that asks for an entire PowerPoint presentation for tomorrow’s 8am meeting? (Just 20 slides, I swear! 85 slides later…) Or that calls on Friday at 4:30pm to request a “quick” icon set for Monday morning’s software upgrade? I’m talking about the client that always exhibits this behavior, not the client with one rare instance when they dropped the ball.

What the biggest ‘Shark Tank’ deal in history taught me about pricing

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Have you ever watched the television show Shark Tank? If you haven’t, here’s the gist: the Shark Tank is a place where hopeful entrepreneurs pitch their business to highly successful millionaire and billionaire entrepreneurs (like Mark Cuban and Daymond John) in an attempt to start, grow, or save their business. The high-profile entrepreneurs invest their own money usually in exchange for equity in the company at question. It’s basically an investment pitch to 5 very successful investors all captured on video. It’s