Getting work done in this economy…

The news these days seem to paint two very different pictures regarding the economy and business today. There are the gloom and doom reports of crisis in all industries and cuts affecting so many families. Then there are the reports of things looking up because government efforts are working – the light at the end of the tunnel, perhaps? If you try to be objective and look at the statistics, its definitely a shocking situation given the unemployment rates and various job data available. It’s no surprise that many companies immediately cut back on budgets, seemingly using the situation to their advantage – to trim the fat, so to speak.

The situation abroad is very similar, here in Italy many companies use the downturn as an opportunity to lay off those inefficient workers as employment laws here are very different than the USA.  So how does one get work done in this kind of situation where money and resources are cut, but the demands of creating innovative and quality work become even more crucial for the survival of businesses?  The answer is simple because the answer is always the same no matter what the situation.  Every business has to work smartly and efficiently to maximize their success.  Simple concept, but how does it translate especially for freelancers and marketing departments who are usually the first ones cut?

Well, I know that I have an advantage being in the technology and science industry…because it’s always growing. New technology will progress forward no matter what. I have found that the work exists even during bad times, but only the best survive as the standards are pushed up higher. I think quality, optimism, loyalty, respect, dedication and organization are paramount. Everyone has optimize so there is no wasted time, hence no wasted money.

As a freelancer I’ve learned a few things…

  • Optimize and automate processes, doing things smarter and not just doing it, whether it’s in designing, coding, marketing my skills or looking for jobs.  I can’t waste my time ever or leisuring go about any of those tasks.
  • As a home-based business I can actually offer cheaper rates than in-house personnel, so I leverage that point.
  • Reframe skills and products to apply for more industries, branching out so that all my eggs are not in one basket.
  • Reach worldwide, this should already be the case for freelancers but it’s even more important now to realize there are no boundaries.

For employers such as the many marketing departments I work for…

  • Having a solid project plan helps freelancers work more efficiently, no need of redoing things as that often happens when a project is ill-defined.
  • Reuse graphics or a certain ideas for multiple products so you can kill two birds with one stone!
  • Employ multiple freelancers if necessary so you can optimize the time it takes to complete a project – choosing whoever is optimal for each task.