Designing A Sustainable Freelance Career


Would you like to pursue your passions and have more control over your career? Would you like schedule and location flexibility and project variety? Would you like the stability of working full-time and getting paid consistently? Thousands of companies have embraced remote work and realize that they have access to a global talent pool. This is advantageous for anyone who has considered or is currently considering freelance work.

>> Submit your interest on becoming a freelance engineer with Toptal and get a call with Talent Acquisition specialist <<

Freelancing is no longer an unstable career choice.

This workshop will help you design a sustainable and profitable full-time (or part-time) freelancing career. We will give you tools, tips, best practices, and help you avoid common pitfalls.

Table of contents

Module 1: Dispelling common myths about freelancing
Module 2: What does freelancing look like in 2021 and beyond
Module 3: Freelancing choices and what to look for (and what to avoid)
Module 4: Benefits of freelancing from a freelancer + case study
Module 6: How to get started freelancing (experience, resume, preparation)
Module 7: Common paths to full-time freelancing
Module 8: Essentials: setting your rate and getting work
Module 9: Next steps: networking with peers, upskilling, changing the world
Module 10: Freelancer AMA


I'm gonna go ahead and get started. So hopefully everyone, everyone can hear me. If you cannot hear me, just let me know in the chat. And thank you guys for joining this workshop. It's gonna be, I think it's gonna be a really insightful workshop. It's gonna be fun. And then what we're gonna do, as you might have seen in the registration, we're going to take a break midway through the workshop, and we will be doing a speed coding challenge. This is a challenge that we have run globally. In fact, we just finished one. And it has, it will be pretty self explanatory. What you can do is take it as many times as you want during that 30 minutes. And you can even come up with your own ways to figure out how to have those questions answered faster. I'll just leave it at that. We have no constraints on this challenge. So what we're going to do is when we take a break, we'll start the challenge. There's a leaderboard, you guys, everybody can go on the leaderboard and see where you are. And the goal is obviously to come out in the top three. So at the end of the workshop, we will leave just a little bit more time in case you've thought of ways to come up with making those answers faster. And then via the leaderboard, we will announce the winners for the speed coding challenge. So I'm Shane. And this is and I'm here with two colleagues who are also they are freelancers full time. And they are going to talk about designing a sustainable freelance career. And I'm going to start it off. Hopefully everybody in the workshop, you may or may not. I'm sure you've heard the term freelancing. I'm sure you've probably you have colleagues that freelance, maybe you freelance yourself. But what we're going to dive into here is how do you actually make freelancing work? And how what kinds of things will you run into? And what happens when you decide that you want to freelance? And I mean, I guess the question is, why would you want to freelance? So I'm going to I'm going to start it off first by saying, if anybody has any questions, please feel free at any time to just go into the chat, ask the question, and then I'll keep track and we'll we'll answer them either me or Rodrigo or Alex will answer them. So that that said, I'm going to start off here with introducing I'll let Alex introduce himself and Rodrigo introduce himself. So everybody knows who's talking. Go ahead, Alex. Thanks, Shane. So can everyone hear me? Or can you hear me okay, Shane? Yes. Yeah, great. So as Shane mentioned, my name is Alex, Alex Weeks. I'm based in Bristol in the United Kingdom. I am a freelance project manager. And I have been full time exclusively freelance for coming on to three and a half years now. And I guess my profile on there said a little bit about the stuff I've done. But I guess, most crucially, as a freelancer, I've worked on projects based in Australia, Asia, Europe, and the United States. I've worked with colleagues and other freelancers, all those continents as well as Africa as well, and South America. So I'm globally proficient. And the range of projects I've worked on have been everything from peer to peer marketplaces, mobile apps, med tech, augmented reality, actually working on one now, starting one now with NFT art creation on the blockchain. So lots of different technologies, lots of different industries, lots of different continents and countries and cultures. And it's been a wild ride. And it's been exciting and interesting and learned loads and taught loads. And here in Vegas, I talked to you guys about how I built that career from working as a salaried employee, then a contractor, and now a freelancer. Question for you, Alex. And I'm just going to ask this because I know some people might be wondering this. So you previously, before freelancing, you were a full-time employee, correct, at a company? Yes. So how would you compare how your life is today versus then? My life today is immeasurably better in every aspect as a freelancer. Even if I take away the financial side of things, everything else, I build, I do my work and I build my life around everything else in my life. So it's all all-encompassing. I don't work at nine to five. I'm not stuck at my desk. Even when I am working, a lot of time, I'm mobile. I'll either be working actually off my mobile device, or if I need to be at somewhere, then if I'm traveling, I can stop somewhere at a cafe or Starbucks or something and work there for an hour or so until the work's done. I'll give further examples, I guess, when I get to my section, but I would say in every aspect of my life, it's better as a freelancer than it was as an employee. Okay, thanks. And then, yeah, when you get to your slides, you'll probably talk more to that, but thank you. Rodrigo, go ahead and introduce yourself. All right, for sure. Can you guys listen to me well? Yes. Okay, perfect. So I can summarize my experience in what I am as a person and as a professional. I would say that I am like a huge nerd, as most of the developers are. So I am a person that is curious about all the stuff I have around me, and I like to learn new stuff, new things. You will probably see that I have behind me a 3d printer, so I am enjoying these 3d prints a lot. So I am building my own 3d printer firmware these days, and I can create my own stuff. This is only a small example of the things I like to do, but I love to work with wood as well, like make some other stuff that are not technological-related. Talking about work itself, I worked with Toptal for more than five years. For me, it's a great pleasure. It's something like I normally say for all the people that ask me, it's a life-changing. As Alex just mentioned, we have a lot of flexibility in our lives, and we can improve ourselves in various many ways. Yeah, I think basically it's that I am a wordpress developer, and I am learning react. We are just talking before we start this event. So the wordpress has a lot of react inside of it these days, and I am learning these things. But I worked with wordpress for, I believe, almost 10 years, and I'm very involved with the entire wordpress community around the world. I speak at as many WordCamps as I can, of course, before the COVID situation. I live in Brazil, so that's why you probably noticed my accent is a little bit different than a normal English-natured speaker. But yeah, I think this is a brief summary about me. Thanks, Rodrigo. Question, where you went to freelancing, did you also have a full-time job at a company? Yes, I used to have like a full-time normal engagement with a company, but before starting freelancing, I have my own agents. So it's a small web agents where I have some kind of clients, but that thing is terrible because I have to deal with a lot of aspects of a normal company. It's not only like deal with my technical expertise. I need to be like a little bit of an interpreter. I need to employ clients. I need to find clients. I need to find a lot of stuff, and that thing makes me a huge stress all my life, to be honest. That came to a point that I decided to give up and try another thing. So I put on the balance what are the knowledge I have, what are my skills, and then I discovered that I know to speak English. I have like a huge technical experience. Why do not work for a global company? So here I am. Yes. Okay. Thank you for that. Thanks. Appreciate it. Okay. So, oh, thanks. Thank you, Marty. I see that. That's awesome. Curious how it is to be a okay. Well, we will answer that for you, Marty, definitely. So the first thing I want to do, everyone, is just go through quickly some of the myths that are out there about freelancing, and what I did is I polled our freelance community, and then Alex, Rodrigo, you could chime in if there's anything I missed here as well. Again, anybody else, if you've heard myths that, and I guess I call them myths, if you've heard anything about freelancing. So the first thing we hear a lot about all the time is that it's not stable enough. We did a poll recently, and a lot of people said, well, I don't want to consider freelancing because it's not stable. I think there's a myth around that because you think, well, you're on your own, and you're out there trying to find work, and it's different than at a job where it's always there. So that's a top concern on people's minds is stability. The second concern people had is no real career path. So people didn't feel that when they were freelancing, they had an actual career map. They didn't know where they were going. They were just working on jobs, and they didn't know where they were headed in that job. So that was another myth. The third one was you'll struggle to find new projects. So I think in many cases, that can be true that if you're working on a project, let's say it's six months or a year, well, what's on your mind is where is my next project going to come from, and how am I going to have my next project? So that's another common concern. And then this was an interesting one, is that people view freelancing as a temporary stopgap, meaning it's just temporary until they actually find a real job. So I thought that comment was interesting. I'm not sure how many of you feel that way. And then lastly, the big one, and I would say this is especially true for the United States, is benefits. A lot of people fear that they won't have any benefits, or they will have to figure out how to find those benefits. And in many cases, being a freelancer is like running a business. Your business is you. And so we have some stuff today that we're going to show you that will speak to each of these myths in some way. And then at the very end, we'll revisit these. And I want to see how everybody feels at the end of this workshop, if we covered those and helped you feel like if these were myths or if they're still true. And if anybody else wants to post in the chat anything else they have heard about freelancing or feel, just go ahead and post that at any time. So keep those in the back of your mind. Okay, so let's talk about freelancing before, and let's talk about it real quick, what it's going to be like now and actually in the future. So I think what we had before, especially before the COVID pandemic, was freelancing was called freelancing. And many people may have heard the term gigs. So you may have heard gig work. That was a very common term. Freelancing was something you would do that was not stable, didn't bring a lot of income. It caused you to have to go out and find work, and all of the myths we talked to were true. Now, what has changed in the last, I would say, five years? Maybe three to five years. Freelancing has changed. It's changed radically. And many people do not realize what's going on outside of the freelancing world. So one big thing that changed is this. We are now seeing the rise of marketplaces and networks. This is different than, say, going out and freelancing on your own, sending email after email to people maybe blind to find work. Networks and marketplaces are definitely dominant. That's one thing that changed. The other big thing that changed is the pandemic. So really what that did is it cemented the idea that working remote and hiring freelance talent works. And in fact, it works so well that companies, large, medium, small, they're all actually realizing, wow, there's amazing talent out there. We can actually utilize that talent. They don't have to come right into the office. They can be anywhere in the world. And better, we can get really good work done. So we have some examples of that as well. And I think that just know that that mindset is changing on a daily basis. People, companies, startups, Fortune 500 companies, they're all looking now outside of their own company to hire talent. And we're seeing that. There's a huge, huge talent shortage right now. And that's a fact. That's a reality of what's going on today. So what does freelancing look like tomorrow? What is it going to be like? Well, one thing is we notice it's going to start supporting upskilling. So if you're in the proper freelance network and the marketplace, there's going to be more of a support network there for you. So instead of feeling like you're on your own, you'll feel like you're a part of something, a part of a company. And that will help support your upskilling because everybody knows that upskilling is critical. You have to keep upping your skills. You have to keep learning new things. You have to keep going. And so that's being supported. And how is that supported? Many ways. They support, you know, maybe you want to take a certification, so they'll help pay for that. And when I say they, I mean the freelance network. You know, there's many different things, classes, speaking opportunities. Maybe you want to go speak. And that's another way to upskill. Finding work. Another thing that's changing. So in the past, this was up to you. You had to find your own work. Now what we're seeing is a shift. Certain places that have freelancers are actually assisting in helping them find work. So they are helping people find work. And that's a critical thing to know. community and peers. That's another thing that's changing. So instead of being on your own and sitting at your desk at home or in a coffee shop feeling like you're all by yourself, having a community and peers is critical. And that's done in many ways. There's Discord. There's Slack. There's all kinds of ways. There's meetups in person with fellow people that work at the same, you know, I say company. I mean, freelance network. And lastly, I would say not having to sell yourself. Once you have achieved being a freelancer for a while, you don't really have to sell yourself anymore. People will come to you. And that can also be a downside as well if you have too much work. Because then you have to make decisions. And lastly, I just want to share that this is a, you know, a statistic that was pulled from Statista. It's a great site. Freelance work is definitely growing in popularity. We had 57 million freelancers in 2017. And there's now estimated 67.6. That's a pretty, that's a pretty big growth. Over 10 million. And an expected 90 million by 20,028. So the curve is just is going up. What's driving that is companies adopting the freelance mindset. So and then of course, it's all just shifting. So okay. So that's kind of where we're at today. And just keep those stats in mind. So what I'm going to do now is I'm going to turn this over to Rodrigo. He is going to talk about, oh, actually, I take that back. I'm turning it back to me. I'm going to talk about freelance marketplaces. So we're going to go through a couple of marketplaces. And there may be more marketplaces you've heard of. I'm going to go through the current marketplaces for everybody. And what we're going to do is take a neutral standpoint. And we did our research to find out where these marketplaces currently exist, some of the pros and cons. And at the end, I've created a nice little table to just sum it up. But let's go through a few of these. And these are the most popular ones. I doubt you have not heard of any of these. There may be more. I'm pretty sure there's more. But these are the big players in the market. Okay. Thanks, Gabriel. I see that. Right. Okay. We do have words of advice for you, Gabriel. In fact, when Rodrigo starts talking and Alex, they will answer a lot of those questions about no experience and they will answer that. So hang in there. We'll answer that. And thanks for attending, Gabriel. Okay. Upwork. I'm sure everybody's heard of Upwork. If you haven't, that would be rare. So how does Upwork work? What is it? It's basically Upwork as a marketplace. Maybe you've used it. Maybe you have not. So employers use Upwork to hire freelancers and they are charged a 3% processing fee. That's from the employer side. The freelancers are charged 20% commission on work up to the value of 500 for each individual client. So Upwork has fees on both ends. So you as a freelancer, if you are charging, I don't know, $5,000 for a project, I just made that up, Upwork takes 20% and then they charge the employer 3%. So there's fees on both ends. And then they also charge freelancers for connecting to employers. So if there were a particular employer you liked, they would charge you if you wanted to do more work for that employer. So what are the pros of Upwork? Okay. Well, it's a huge, huge community. It's a massive platform. So there's a lot of job opportunities. You can pick and choose from many different things. On the downside of that, it can also be very hard to navigate the platform and you have to be very quick. Because if a really good job is posted, let's just say, you know, something you're interested in, there's a ton of other people as well. So you got to be quick and you got to get in there and be fast. They do have a method of notifying you of new jobs though. Another pro for Upwork is that because they have these fees, it can help filter out scams and lower tier jobs. So that's a good thing. And we're seeing many large companies, I've listed just a few, they are starting to post jobs on Upwork. So it's definitely a growing network. Now, what are some of the cons? Well, like I said, navigating Upwork can be daunting, especially if you're new to freelancing. There have been payment disputes between freelancers and clients. This is a reality in some of these networks where you'll bill, the client may not pay on time. What do you do? Well, one of the downsides people have mentioned with Upwork is that it's all automated. So you really don't have a person to talk to to deal with this. So that can be a downside. And then again, I point out it can be difficult to navigate. So what does Indeed say? So they did a review July 13. And they said, you can spend more time looking for new jobs than actually working on them. A lot of competition. But when you land a nice client, it's really nice. So I think with Upwork, we can generally say that it's growing. It's definitely there to stay. Just keep in mind, some of these, some of the cons versus the pros for Upwork. If you're thinking of Upwork. Okay. TopTel. Yes, we work at TopTel. But however, this is a very neutral slide. So let's talk about TopTel for a minute. Freelancers that want to join the TopTel network must pass a screening process. Oh, thanks. Thanks, Rodrigo, for answering Gabriel. So with TopTel, one of the things people know, first off is you just don't join it. And you're just not thrown into a sea of freelancers. There is a pretty rigorous screening process. Rigorous, in fact, so rigorous that it is stated that TopTel takes the top 3%. That is true. There's a reason for that, which I'll explain in the pros. The full screening process to get into TopTel's network can take between two to five weeks. Once you're in the network, you're offered client projects. TopTel has a human team of matchers. We call them matchers. They send you work. So they look at your skills. They look at your experience. They look at you as a person, and then they send you work. Clients provide TopTel with project requirements, and then interview the freelancers. So TopTel has a human team of matchers. We call TopTel screens the clients as well as the freelancers to make sure they're legitimate, they will pay, and that they have good work to offer freelancers. And then the freelancers at TopTel determine their own pay rates. So you could set your pay rate at a certain rate. You could also say, I just want to do 10 hours a week. Or you could say, I want to do 20 or 40 or whatever your choice is. So what are some of the pros of this? If you pass the screening process and get through all of the different steps, and if anybody's interested, I could tell you what the steps are. It's public information. You can make substantially more than some of the other websites. One of the things about TopTel is they don't charge you as a freelancer. They only charge the client. So if you have a rate of, let's say, $100 an hour, that's what you're going to make. The platform provides automated and personal support for freelancers, so you have an entire team of people. Yeah, thank you. Yes, you can check the process there. Yes. The projects are more sophisticated, and they tend to be more longer-term. They're more sophisticated because TopTel does actually screen the companies. Then, TopTel takes care of the administrative overhead, so you don't have to deal with all of the payments, all of the legal, all of that's taken care of. It does provide for really good job stability because there is a community of thousands of freelancers that are all communicating together, and you feel like you have support all the time. Now, what are some of the cons of this? Well, it's not as easy to do. What are some of the cons of this? Well, it's not as easy to qualify as a TopTel freelancer. It is true, and I said I'd mention the reason. One of the big reasons is just the demand from the clients. We have big clients who have very high standards, and they want to make sure that they're getting the best talent that they can get, and therefore, they really appreciate the screening process. It's driven by the market and the clients. That can be a con. One of the other cons is there is a huge focus on enterprise clients. Now, that said, enterprise businesses tend to work more traditional hours, so you might find yourself in that situation where you have to be available during those business hours. By the way, there's clients all over the world, so it's not United States-centric. If clients complain about the quality of work, freelancers can be dismissed. That's another con that can be found. Again, it just goes to the rigorous standards, so very high standards. G2 did a review. They did it in September. What did they say? You can read it here. They said TopTel is much more suited for finding top clients, and it's more rigorous. He said, I was rejected again and again, although I have a level one profile in Fiverr and a top-rated profile in Upwork. Upwork is the industry leader in vetted freelance networks. Again, can you choose the working time zone? I believe so. Can you, Rodrigo? Yes, you can. Yeah, you can, Marty. Now you've heard about Upwork. You've heard about TopTel. What's the next big one? Freelancer. Sure, everybody's heard of this one. How does it work? How does freelancer work? Why is it different? Employers will post jobs for freelancers to bid on, and the website manages the project deadlines and payments. Again, it's very automated. Here's what happens. Employers will post jobs, and freelancers will bid on these jobs. You'll see it, and you'll bid against everybody else. I think you can already tell where that can go. Once a job is awarded, employers are charged either 3% or 3%, whichever is higher. They have a bottom rate. Then on freelancer, there's a pretty wide swath of fees charged to freelancers. You can have add-ons. You can enhance your profile, and you're charged for that. What are the pros? Users tend to applaud the platform for usability. It's really mature. They've been at this a long time. They know what they're doing, and the platform is really mature and robust. That said, so is the client user base, very big client user base that you can choose from. It's a big, big community. What are the cons? Well, going back to how it works, many of the jobs are low skill and low pay. That's the nature of the bidding. Some freelancers complain about the numerous pyramid fees. That's what I was saying. Some people have complained in the past about all the different fees they charge. Then it's public knowledge that freelancer has been a part of a few legal actions due to hacking. It does happen to many companies, exposure of users' personal information. We pulled a review from G2, and one of the things I think this encompasses freelancer great, a lot of people that are just out of boot camps or just out of school find freelancer attractive because it's a really good way to just get started. You can take smaller projects with limited skills and get your feet wet. I would say it's a perfect place to just to get started. Fiverr, everybody's heard of Fiverr. We all know Fiverr as the gig workplace. Again, they promote gigs. It's common knowledge that they start at $5, but again, obviously you know that you're not going to be making $5. You'll make more than that. That's just how they get people in. For sellers, meaning clients, it's free. They can post jobs, and then Fiverr will take a percentage of each transaction. Just like Upwork, Fiverr takes 20% of earnings from the freelancer as well. They will take 20%. This is an interesting note. They will take the 20% even from any tips that are left. If somebody wants to tip you and give you extra, I found that interesting. What are the pros? Well, Fiverr has built an amazing platform. They've put a lot of money, a lot of investment into it, and it's very friendly. It's very easy to navigate. You can get in there and they do put the center of the focus on you as the freelancer, so that's good. I already talked easy to navigate. What are the cons? You're going to find the pay scale on Fiverr lower. It is known as the cheaper way to get work. Users report pressure to complete jobs quick. Fiverr wants turnover. They want fast turnover. You can imagine if you're trying to do your best work, that might be difficult and have a little pressure. Again, we pulled a review from Freelancing Journal. They weren't as kind. It's a highly competitive marketplace, I'll say that. I would say that it's like Upwork in that it's just so competitive. Finally, the last one we want to touch on here is Guru. Guru is popular. It's not as popular as Upwork or Fiverr or Freelancer, but it's there. They work a little different. How does Guru work? The website will match individuals with listed jobs. I think it's automated matching where they'll try to match you with a job just based on looking at your skill set. Then you can also filter and browse jobs as well. Employers are charged a 2.9% fee. Then the freelancers are charged a 9% fee on paid invoices. Then you get bid credits. I almost feel like it's like a gamification where the more jobs you finish, you get these credits. Those credits actually move you higher in the ranks as you bid for jobs. It's a different way to do it, but I guess for some people it works. They get excited about that. Then the one thing Guru does do is they charge you, if you choose, a premium membership. You can pay extra, and I believe it's monthly, to get more exposure. They're definitely using a different method. Again, they have a mature platform, and they're global, so they can reach companies around the world. They also have this thing called SafePay. Some people really love Guru for that. SafePay is a protection so that you will not enter a situation where you would not get paid. Guru will step in and become the mediator. That's a good thing on Guru's part. What are some of the cons? Some people have, again, users have reported lulls in the project connections, so it's very much so up and down, up and down. Again, that can affect your income. The Better Business Bureau gave Guru an F only because there were some fraudulent payment activities going on. Again, every company has its downsides. Those are the five top networks. Again, I'm just going to list them here for everybody. One thing I can do is for everybody that joined this workshop, I will take the pieces out of this slide for everybody, and I will send these to you so you have this information, or you can screenshot it, but I will create a PDF of this so everybody can have a copy. That way, you can have something to keep. Yeah, you're welcome, Chris. No problem. It's just too hard to memorize all this information. In summary, I just created this little table for everybody. Again, I'll send this out. I think what you can take away from this is pretty simple. There's many networks to choose from. Each of them are geared towards a different phase of Freelancer, and they're geared for different goals. I think what you'll see in general is a lot of people start out either using Freelancer or Upwork or maybe even Guru, and they kind of get their feet wet to see what it's like. Now, that could be a downside at the same time. If you have a bad experience, it could leave a really bad taste in your mouth of what freelancing is about. When you have more experience and you're ready to go through an actual screening process, then you're going to enter into, that's where TopTel shines. They will take care of you once you're in. You'll feel like you're working for a company. Again, I will send these all out. I hope that was helpful for people to just run through some of the big networks, because I think setting that foundation for everybody is really important. The last thing I want to say is, again, I'll send this out as well. I want to leave you with this thought. There's a pre-freelancing thought and a future freelancing thought. The pre-thought was the gig economy. I'm sure everybody's heard of the gig economy. That's not a secret. Really, what was that gig economy? Well, the platform was the differentiator. The work is commoditized, meaning much like Fiverr, where everybody just gets in and bids, or much like, I think, Freelancer, where everybody just gets in and bids. When that happens, you can see how the rates will drop faster, because if somebody comes in and says, well, I'll do it for this, and I'll do it for that, it really commoditizes the value. Again, the work is commoditized, and so is the talent. Downward-weight pressures happen. The platform controls your experience, so you're just at the whim of the platform, and there's very limited growth. Let's look at what's happening today. Now, we're entering into something new called the talent economy, as opposed to the gig economy. This is, I would say, 2020, or 2019, and beyond. This is the future right here. So, the talent economy, the platform, and when I say platform, I really mean how your profile is presented, how your experience is prevented, how you're treated as an individual, as opposed to just a Freelancer. You're a person. You're Alex, so you're Rodrigo. You are a person. That's different, and that's part of the talent economy. The work is differentiated. Therefore, it's not work that's just continually bottom of the barrel. You're going to get actual real projects, and I think Alex worked on a project, he'll speak to, that was one of the most innovative things to come out of in the surgery realm for surgeons, and that kind of work just does not show up on these gig kind of mindsets. So, skill gaps are high in the talent economy. There's a lot of good skills out there, and there is real shortages. So, it's a growing, thriving need. The talent controls our experience. That means you, as a Freelancer, are in charge. You can set your rates, set your hours, and really, really go for anything you want to go for and build your career. Then there's very high growth potential. You can start out at one level and end up at a completely different level. That's the difference, and if there's anything to take away, I think this mindset of the gig economy, which was definitely pre-pandemic versus where we're seeing now is the talent economy. Freelancers are more in charge. And they're definitely, definitely more valued. So, okay. Again, any questions, throw them out. What I'm going to do, I'm going to move next to Rodrigo, and I'm going to let him talk about the benefits of freelancing, but from his own perspective as a Freelancer. So, Rodrigo. Sure. Thank you so much, Shane. I think you covered pretty well this kind of comparison between some of these Freelancer platforms I have these days, and there are other ones as well. So, thank you for that. It's very useful. All right. So, my plan here is to talk about some of my plan here is to talk about some of the benefits we can get choosing to go and start a Freelancer career. As Shane just mentioned, I can talk about some of this stuff. I can talk about my own point of view, and I hope this can be self-explanatory for you guys. But again, if you have a question, just put it on the chat, and I'll be glad to answer that as soon as I can. When we talk about benefits about freelancing, I normally talk about flexibility. So, when we start to go to work on this kind of new career, you can work as much as you can whenever you want and at any place, of course. So, if you want to work at your home ops, you can do that. But let's suppose you would like to travel and go to another country, you can do that as well, or just go to a cafe and get some good cafe and work. So, you won't have to have a good and a solid internet connection. This is the main thing. So, if you want to work easily, you have to have a good connection. Also, normally, there is no fixed hours. So, you can choose to work in an hour engagement, in a part-time engagement, in a full-time engagement, or more than that. So, it's up to you to decide how much hours you want to expand on that. So, I can give you some examples. For example, if you have this kind of flexibility, you're going to have more time for you. So, you can do whatever you want to do. For example, in my case, as I mentioned, I like to deal with 3d printers these days, but I like as well to ride my bike, to run or fly my drone, or play video games with my son. So, it's up to you to decide when is the best time to keep your main focus on work and your deliverables, and then do another thing. So, this is one of the greatest things in terms of flexibility, because you can, for example, you can focus on your family or in the ones that you care about. Another good thing about freelancing, I normally say that you can choose to go and work with meaningful projects, and you can work in something that you feel that is comfortable for you. For example, normally, in some kind of usual normal jobs, you have to work on the things that your boss or someone gives to you, this kind of assignment. And not even always is something that you'd like to work that you are excited for, right? It can be, but not always. If you choose to go to the full-time, to the freelancer career, you can go and choose to work on something that you are comfortable to work. For example, in my case, I choose to go with wordpress, since it's something that I know for sure, and I like to work by the community, by all of the things we have around of this wordpress ecosystem. But you can work with react. We can work with angular. You can work with Microsoft technologies. Doesn't matter. It's up to you, right? And it's not only development. You can freelancing some other careers like project management or design or any other thing. So I normally say that you have to work on something meaningful for you, something that is truly meant to be a part of it. For example, when you choose to work as a freelancer, you can choose for who you're going to work. And maybe that kind of company or kind of business is something that you admire, that you like the way they handle that, and you want to be a part of it. So during your possible freelancer career, you're going to probably swipe to project to another, and you're going to have these kind of different opportunities in your career. And you need to understand what makes you happy in this kind of routine. Then I think you can choose to go and start working on something that you like the most. It can be something specific, like I just mentioned, like a technology or project that has like a cool and a good purpose for you or a combination of both. So it's up to you decide which is the best. Another benefit that I like to say and explain is that you can focus on your main skills. As I just mentioned, I choose to put my freelancer career in a way that I can express my wordpress knowledge. So this is something that I am passionate for it. And you can do the same. You can go ahead and find something that you're passionate and work on it. You can work to improve your skills. You can work in order to help like in a specific cause, like open source projects, for example, like in the react community, we have a lot of things that can be done as a community. And the community normally works to grow something together. So you can put your main focus on this kind of open source project, for example. Another thing that is important to say is that working as a freelancer, and this doesn't mean that you cannot do the same thing working in a normal job, but as a freelancer, you can do your best and you can do your best normally always. You always have the chance to do your best on something. So the better work you do, the better future projects you're probably going to have to work and some kind of recognition you get in the near future. You can imagine that you do something today. It can be something like you plant the seed and you reap it in the future. So, for example, when I choose, I can talk again, I can talk by my own experience. When I choose to go to this kind of freelancer career, I put something on my mind that for everything I do, I have to do my best. And the best is what I can do at that moment. That is something that can bring some benefit for my clients, that can bring some benefit for the one that I am trying to help. So, again, if you plant the seeds today, you're going to probably reap good results in the near future. When I start to work as a freelancer, there is another thing that I put aside of this, which is speak. Go to global events and speak by my experiences and also spread my crazy ideas about something. For example, in the other talk I did in some work camp, I think it was in the work camp, maybe Miami or Toronto, I can remember exactly. I choose to do something that no one is able to do before. I don't know why they don't think, but I choose to integrate wordpress with a simple Hasberry Pi. So, I try to measure the decibels of the crowd screaming, and if they reach a certain level of decibels, I make the Hasberry Pi post something inside my wordpress graph. So, again, this is a crazy idea, but it works, right? So, yeah, this is something really cool of this kind of freelancer career. Another thing is the independence. So, freelancing gives you the independence, but at the same time, I like to say that the power is nothing without control. Like, independence not always means taking control of your life because there is a lot of external factors that can push you down. For example, if you don't have a clear routine, you can, for example, destroy your work day. Everyone has good work days and bad working days. Maybe someone calls you in the middle of your coding. Your son can get you to your office and request some attention. Your wife might request you something. Those things happen, right? And we need to be prepared for these kind of interruptions. But when I talk about independence, I say that you can be your own life. You can be whenever you want to be and whenever you want to do. Learning exponentially is something that you're going to see and you're going to feel working as a freelancer. If you choose to work whenever platform, it can be Upwork or TopTile, and I can talk about TopTile, which is the main platform I work, you will learn exponentially. Mainly because we're going to get in touch with the best professionals in that technology or in the area you are used to work. And it's not only that because our projects normally push you further away. Our clients normally request something that is cool to work or that is something that you have to make something like best or something beautiful or something that you can be proud of. So you can learn exponentially because, again, you can get in touch with the best professionals in the world. You can learn new tricks. You can learn new technologies. You can learn to code on something new. Again, I can bring you my own perspective. I am a wordpress professional. And for those who don't know, the wordpress cart was building PHP. And now in these days, we have a lot of react inside of it. So I have to learn something new. I have to learn react in order to keep moving forward my wordpress knowledge. And how I did that, how I choose to learn. For example, inside TopTile, we have a specific program that can give you some internal academies where you have the opportunity to learn something new, like react, for example. But there are other ones. And also, like inside TopTile, we can provide you some online courses, for example, inside Udemy. So I am able to learn with the best professionals in the world. So apart from that, I think this topic is important as well in terms of benefits, which is basic. You can work from anywhere. So the freelancer career brings you a different perspective of physical work and basic needs. For example, you can transcend the boundaries of normal apps, for example. Definitely, you can have more, you can have your own home office with the space with the things you like to do, the things you like to use during your work days, like a comfy chair, like a good desk, like a big widescreen to code, and much more cool stuff like that. But if you want, of course, if you want to spend some time at the beach, you can do that as well. So you can take like this call, small vacation, for example. So you can go to the beach and you have like a solid connection. As I explained at the beginning of my talk, you can work with no problems. Or for example, I think the only thing you have to do with you is like your laptop and like a solid connection to do some remote work. So you can work from anywhere. This is another cool thing. And at last, but not least, I normally like to explain about income. For example, for me, I live in Brazil. Our currency here is the Brazilian Rio, which is a different kind of currency from other places. And normally, as you work for a global company, you can have like your income in a global currency, which is normally dollars, for example. It works the same for euros. But this helps you a lot when you make the exchange for your local currency. In my case, for example. So this is another good benefit that you're going to take from working as a freelancer. And normally something that you can't do if you work for a normal or usual company locally in your country, for example. Yeah, I think mostly those are my main topics chain. I, unfortunately, whereas I was speaking, I was not able to check the chat, but I will answer all the questions as soon as possible. Yeah. Thanks, Rodrigo. I think, yeah, Zane had a question and Alexi had a question as well. Well, actually hers was more of a comment, but Zane had a question first. Are you able to see that? Yeah, I'm just checking right now. Just a second. Okay. Okay. Just want to make sure those are addressed. Okay. I'm going to ask Zane questions. So Zane, again, I can talk by my experience. A lot of people ask me during my work days. I start, I work with TopTall for more than five years. And I am talking about TopTall because this is my main experience. And these five years, I never stopped working unless I want to start. For example, if I go to my personal breaks, like into a vacation, but besides that, I never stopped working. And I normally say that if you are open to work, we have work for you. That's basic, the thing. In terms of other freelancer platforms, I believe it's kind of the same. They have a different process as Zane just explained to us, but there is a lot of work these days. A lot of people are, people and companies are looking for global professionals. They normally are engaged on some calls, as I explained it, and they prefer that kind of work. So I believe we have enough work for who wants to work. Okay. Let me see Alexei questions. Rodrigo, do you want me to add to that as well? Sure. Go ahead, Alex. Yeah. I guess just from a different perspective as well, still TopTall, because all my work has been through TopTall pretty much. Although there has been some outside of it, but I'd say the bulk of my work has been through TopTall. And over the last three and a half years, it's only been a period of two weeks, I think, where I was only working 20 hours a week, rather than full time. And I often work kind of more than 40, too my own choice. But there hasn't been a time, apart from that period where I was only working 20 hours. And just to kind of segue that into addressing Alexei's point, the rate that I am on, or the rate I was on at the time at least, even at 20 hours a week, it was enough. It was more than I would have been on in a full time job and covering all the benefits. So I've been able to put one into my pension to cover my, I mean, I live in the UK, so I get healthcare free, unlike some of my American colleagues. But to cover all of those things additionally as well. So I'm talking about kind of setting your rate later on. And it will include things, thinking about that as well. Your rate should also include the fact that you're right, you're not going to have all the employer benefits, but you need to think about that and price that into what you do. Yeah, in addition to that, I actually agree with you, Alex. It's something that you can cover. And sometimes some platforms can provide you like, as I just mentioned, like access to some of learning platform, such as Udemy for example, or any other kind of education. So this is kind of your education budget you mentioned, Alexei. Some platforms can provide you also some resources to pay for your equipment, like desk, computer. It's not the case of Toptall, of course, but I know that some platforms are able to pay that. And in terms of like paid holidays and sick leaves, so it's up to you. I think if you choose to work, you're going to receive enough to deal with that if necessary. And also some platforms might provide you these kind of different payments as well. Did I answer the questions? I'm not sure what I think. And I think there was one more question that came in that was interesting. At what point in a salaried career? That was an interesting one. Okay, cool. That's a good one. And you guys don't need to think that there is too much and not like too less. Today, like currently working as a freelancer for a global company, I was able to receive a salary that is equal to like, probably like board director of a company or president of a company. For example, I would say that is something around 10x my usual normal company salary. So yeah, it's up to you actually. At some point on the chat, I talk about my cousin experience. My cousin choose to move from chemical engineering to development. He did that change in a year. Now he's working in a normal company with a normal engagement, but he wants to work as a freelancer. So I help him in order to build his own profile and build his English skills and stuff like that. So now he's taking our engagement with specific freelancer platform. So he's learning something. And by that freelancer work, he's getting his income in dollars, which is more than he gets from his normal job. All right. Let me see the chat again. Yeah, we have another great question from Nico. Yeah. And Alex, you can answer this too. For sure. Sure. Yeah, sure. Should I go first? Yeah, you can go. I'm just reading. Sure. So just before touching that one, the previous question is in terms of what point during your solid career, I think I'll touch on it in a bit more detail when I talk about kind of moving into a freelance career. It's definitely important to understand your own skill set and be able to marry that up against what the, I guess, what the market is looking for. What you're able to do, even as a junior dev with less than two years experience, there will be, you'll be able to see what other kind of work is available for that kind of work as a freelancer. And as Nico said about his cousin, you can take hourly engagements or smaller, less commitment on projects to be able to build up that portfolio, build up that profile, so that you are able to then build up into a, if you wanted to go into a full-time career as a freelancer. In regards to Nico's question, so in my experience, so my, how I moved into the freelance, so one of the things that I did was I was working a salaried job and it was eight or six. So normal work, kind of work in office hours. And I picked up a part-time engagement where I worked with a client in the East Coast of America, sorry, in the West Coast of America. So the time that started for them, their 9 a.m. was my 5 p.m. and I was able to negotiate with my employer to be able to work, finish earlier. So I took a shorter lunch break and finished a bit earlier and worked with the client and started a bit later. So I didn't start with them until six, which was fine, and I just worked the four hours in the evening with them. I guess you can obviously have the conversation with the client as well if it's a case of something that can be done asynchronously. I guess for me as a project manager, I needed to be available when the development team were available. But as a developer, a lot of the work could be done asynchronously and if you're able to do that, then that shouldn't be a difficult conversation to have with the client. Yeah, I think I don't have anything else to say. I think you covered pretty much basic my experience as well. So if you want to make this movement from like a normal job to freelancer, you can work again whenever you want. If it's on your midnight or during your weekends, it's up to you, right? So you can also choose how many hours you want to spend in this kind of job. So again, it's possible and it's totally up to you. Hey, Rodrigo, Alex, if I mean, and I think and I'm just kind of asking for Nico, if you do come in though and say you just put your time at let's just say 20 hours, I'm just saying that. Is it going to be harder though to find work? So for me, for me personally, I've been working through top 10 for the last two and a half years and I have only ever taken on part-time or hourly engagements. And I'll say as to why slightly later on, but I can promise you that 20 hours a week is more than feasible. I've not ever had any problem getting work. And I think clients also, especially if it's their first foray into freelancing, they may prefer it because they're not committing to a full-time salary. They're looking at, well, what can this person do over part-time? And they may want to scale it up, which may work for you or may not. And if it doesn't, then as I said, you're a freelancer, as Rodrigo said, you can decide to let the client be one. Thank you. Yeah. Same thing. For example, there is, I believe, again, by my own experience, there is enough work to do. So if you choose to go, like you mentioned, like to start working in a part-time engagement together with your normal work, you can imagine that you're going to need to expand at least five extra hours per day working something else, right? So you need to understand if you're open to that, unless you're going to probably have a lot of things to do and you might not deliver something good. So it's a hard decision to make because working as a freelancer doesn't mean that you need to deliver something, again, like whatever. It's like one of the good and best options you have, but you have to deliver something good as well. It's a real work, right? We are not playing. We are working professionally and our clients expect you to deliver something real for them. They are expecting that. Otherwise, there is no reason to work in that way. And Alexi actually posted a question. You guys can read it there. This is actually a really interesting question, observation. I don't know if both of you could answer or share your views on that. Okay, cool. So isn't there a dilemma? I would say no, not for me personally. So a bit about me. I have four children between the ages of 12 and four months. So you can imagine all the complexities with that. And I generally build between 60 and 70 hours a week on the projects I work on. And I guess it comes down to prioritizing time, balancing time and knowing when I'm able to work. I guess because I've got a good reputation with TopTile and the clients I work with, I'm able to kind of dictate the hours I'll work within reason. But as long as the work gets done, the clients are happy. If it comes down to, I guess the other side of it is when it comes down to something I'll talk about later on, survival budget or kind of what you want to, you should have an idea of what you want to make as a freelancer. Once you exceed that, once you achieve that, then it's important to consider the rest of your life as well. As much as I enjoy what I do, the reason I do it isn't to benefit my clients, it's for the benefit of my family. And so once I'm able to achieve those goals with my family, then I'm able to kind of make the decision of what's more important to me, whether the extra $100 or so is important or whether the time with my kids and my partners. So that's how I look at things. I think it's important to understand what your limits are and where you want to start and stop. Yeah, that's a good point. My family is a little bit small. I have just one son and a dog and my wife. But I would say, for example, again, I can talk about my experience. In the past, I used to work 60 hours per week, which is a lot, right? And in some point of my life, I get very stressed and then I have to choose to start working on something that I can do and have my healthy. Okay. And from now, I am working 40 hours per week and I believe that's totally fine for me. I understand that my rate is comfortable for me to live, to have good life and stuff like that. So it's not a dilemma for me as well. For me, it works very well. And I think Julia asks something as well. Yeah, Julia's question was great. Okay. Yeah. So, Julia, how can I say? I'm not being pain to be here talking to you, right? I am using my own personal time to be here spreading to the world what is freelancing. But for example, I like to do what I do, as I just mentioned. So we have all the kinds of jobs, right? But it doesn't mean that you need to work on something that other people doesn't work. That is inside the company, you have great projects, great cases, and you can check that. And you're going to probably understand that they are not something that someone doesn't want to do. They would love to do. They would love to work on something like that. We have all the kinds of clients, brands, and projects. So this is the same for freelancer career. Of course, it depends on the platform, for sure. Some platforms have different kinds of projects to deal. But talking about specific about top, I never face it something that I will, okay, I would prefer to not work on that. Why I choose to start work on something. No, I never faced that situation on my life. I've actually been working on a project. And there was a, how do I put this, a class of personalities, I'd say, with me and the client, we had a difference of opinion on a number of things. I wasn't very happy working on the project. And so I went to the delivery manager, so the person who gets the client and the work for me at TopTile, I told them I didn't want to work on the project anymore. I was unhappy with it. They moved me off to be someone else on. And I was then moved into a project that I did enjoy. So I assume the person who moved into that project may have enjoyed it as well. So it's quite flexible. You don't have to, we're not doing toilet duty. We are, we are working on things that we want to work on. And we're here as Rodriguez said, we're not getting paid to speak today. We're here because we do believe what we're doing is for us, at least the best way forward. Thanks, guys. We got a really good question. And I think this is super important. And let's just say when you get stuck on any problem, because I think Alex, your problems might be different than Rodrigo's, but how do you guys, okay, in a traditional work set, if you get stuck on something, like he mentioned, you have a daily standup or you have colleagues that you can talk to in person. What do you guys do when you're stuck on something? You need support. Sure. Sure. For example, normally we don't work alone, right? We have other colleagues that we can discuss about our problems. They are not physical in the same room as we are, but we can discuss our problems. So we can use, for example, Slack. And again, I am getting topped our example. We have a huge Slack community. So a lot of people is inside our Slack community. And you can go to some of our technical channels. For example, we have a react channel or a wordpress channel where you can join, request for help or even help some colleague. There is one way to to look for answers or request for help. But of course, it's not only that. Some clients has other developers. You can talk to them. There is many ways to talk and solve problems, unstuck, get unstuck in some situations that is not necessarily to stay in the same room as your colleagues. I mean, the virtual environment is huge and you can look for answers and request for help in some of the possible tools and things we have around us these days. And I think one thing, also I think one thing to mention is that a lot of times you're with a team of people on a job. So you're not necessarily working by yourself. You're actually with a team. Let me say one thing to that though, because I think this is important. And again, I apologize. I can only speak from the top top point of view at this, because I don't know if the others do this. But we have a community of all the freelancers and they do meetups. So they do actually collaborate together if they want to. Again, it's their choice. And so they do foster that if they want to. I don't know if Alex or Rodrigo, you've done that personally, but I know that we do have that. We have a community. She's in charge of all the community for freelancers and they organize meetups. They organize ways for you to feel like you have colleagues that you can talk with. And I think fostering that makes it feel more like you do have that kind of like what you were mentioning with the daily standup. Because you don't just want to go to Stack Overflow. You don't just want to go to forums. That makes you feel like you're by yourself. You want to talk to other colleagues. And yes, you can do that. Julia says, is it admitting being unqualified? I mean, do you feel that way, Alex or Rodrigo, if you needed to ask for help, especially with one of the client devs, would you feel like, oh my gosh, I don't look as experienced? I can go first. I don't feel that. Mainly because, for example, again, as Shane just mentioned, I can talk by my personal experience with Toptal, which is where I am. So when you choose to go and work with Toptal, you have to run through a certain screening process. And this screening process is not the easiest one. It's not the hardest one, but it's not the easiest one. And with that screening process, we can understand how senior you are on something. So I would say that if you are already inside the platform, you're going to probably have the necessary skills and you will not feel unqualified to work on something. And another important thing, our internal colleagues or internal team is able to understand based on your profile, if you are capable or not to start working on something. So they will probably not send you to work on something that you don't have experience, for sure. So that's another perspective. Okay. Yeah, I guess from my perspective, as a project manager, I guess it's more, a lot of things we get stuck on would be more opinion-based. So having those, having to be able to have those conversations with other project managers, I actually run, before COVID happened, I actually run community events in the area that I work in. And it's good on the technical side. I know that Toptal, again, I'm thinking from Toptal perspective, but I know Toptal has partnerships with companies like Amazon, so aws, for instance. So if we get stuck on things like documentation or anything required on that side, we're able to get kind of a direct contact within those organizations to help as well, which is a benefit of being part of the network. Okay, I think we have, let's see, we have one more question from John. Let's go ahead and answer that question. And then I think what we want to do is do our break and start our challenge. I think everybody's going to have a lot of fun with this. So I'm kind of excited to see how people do. And you guys will all have a blast with this. People that have done it really like it. So let's go ahead. If you guys don't mind, Alex Rodrigo, can we answer John's question just so he's not hanging? He says, will you still, so let's say you're in the network and you're in there. Do you still have to go through interviews to land a client's team? And what does that entail? So if you don't mind me going first, Rodrigo? So sometimes, there's different, I guess, teams within TopTile and the network. Sometimes we'll be working with only TopTile talent. So if it's TopTile projects engagement, for instance, we'll only be working with other people within the network. And sometimes on those projects, at least in my experience, someone will put you forward to the client. So the delivery manager will put you forward to the client as part of that team. And the client can sign off on the team straight away. And you get to work without having to have an additional interview with the client. Sometimes the client might feel that they want to have a conversation with you first, or it may be that you're working with some of their team to see how well you can integrate with their on-site team. Or even if it is through an engagement where you're working with TopTile talent and they want to have a conversation with you. So sometimes you will have an interview. And that can vary. I mean, it's generally more to discuss your approach, or at least from a project manager's perspective to discuss the approach. I know I've been part of interviews with clients to interview developers as well. And they want to make sure that they have the necessary experience and the skill set to be able to solve whatever the specific problem is that they're trying to resolve. So sometimes those interviews can involve TopTile talent being part of it as a project manager or a product manager as well. Thanks, Alex. Is there anything you wanted to add to that, Rodrigo? Yes, I think, for example, besides the engineering role inside TopTile, I am also a screener. So I can talk about one important thing, which is basically when you apply to work in a job, you have to have this kind of interview with the client in order to understand and met each other. For example, you need to understand what are the project requirements and what are the expected deliverables, right? So these kind of interviews are something good for both sides, for the client and for the professional that is starting to work on something because you can solve doubts, right? And this is something good that you can take from that interview. And for me, on my perspective, I really like that. I think it's very beneficial. Okay. I'm going to turn this over to Rodrigo, and we're going to just cover how to get started. So these are going to be some basics from his perspective, too. How do you get started doing this? So whether you're in your career, just starting your career, how do you actually get started? So Rodrigo, take it away from there. Okay, perfect. So moving on to this next part of the workshop, I'm going to try to explain you briefly what is my perspective, my experience, and the path I have to start working as a freelancer. So in some part of my career, I get stuck in a point that I was not able to work on the things I would love to work. And it's not only that. I was feeling that I was not getting the necessary recognition, like I was not being recognized as I was expecting to be. So that point creates me like a point of distress in my life. And I feel that I get stuck in some point. So at that point, my son was born and I have a lot of things to do, right? Not only for my son and help my wife with that situation, but with my career, which was not good, or it was not in a way that I was expecting for. So I put everything on the balance. And I choose to understand what are my main skills, the things I have knowledge, and the stuff that I can use for my own benefit in order to move forward and think about a different career or a small change on my career. And of course, I put the bad things on the other side of the scale. So for me, I was looking to be recognized by my work, about the things I do, and about the things I love to do, actually, which is code, right? I am a developer, I am an engineer, and normally this kind of professional loves the things they do. So I was looking for that. And another important thing, I was looking in a way that I can improve my skills. And what I mean with that is not only technical skills, but for example, language skills. Because again, I am not an English native speaker. So my native language is Portuguese, which is probably different than other languages. It's not even close to English or Spanish or other. So I was looking for that. And I was looking in a way that I can travel, met new places, and spread my ideas. So I put all of this in the scale and the balance. And I was trying to understand how can I achieve that goal. So at that point, I choose to go to the web and make some research in order to understand if other companies around the world will be interested in someone that has my skills. I find some options. I applied. And the sad thing is that I failed in most of the companies that I applied. You can believe that. And in some points, I figure out that it's not my skills that are weak or I have any kind of lack in my experience. It's not that. Actually, I was not aware about how it works in the screening process in a remote way. And when I figure out that, I was able to try again. To be honest, I was invited for joining the TopTel network. At some point, I believe someone sent me a link on my LinkedIn. And when I, for example, saw that and knowing the TopTel background, I think, oh, okay, if I fail on the other ones, I'm going to probably fail on this one. And I think when I stop and think about my career, my process, I put in the balance one thing. Why not to try, right? What I can lose if I try? And the answer was very simple. I don't have anything to lose. I will try and understand if I am a good fit or not. So I applied to work. I applied to pass through the TopTel screening process. And then I realized that I have more experience than I was expecting to have. And the crazy thing is that when I apply to other kinds of remote jobs, I haven't understand how this kind of process works. But now when I applied to TopTel, I was able to reach all the necessary stuff because I had that kind of screening, remote screening experience. Gladly, I passed on the process and start working with TopTel. As we already mentioned in some of our talk, Alex and I, we are very pleasant on working for a company as TopTel, work as a remote freelancer, work as a developer. And I think this is one of the greatest things that happened in my life in these past five years. I'm not talking only about money, which most of the people think. I'm talking about increasing my knowledge, having these kind of opportunities to spread my point of view in a workshop, in a conference, in a talk like this. And it's something that I normally say that is life-changing for me. So the biggest takeaway of my talk here is that you don't have to wait to be fully aware or fully professional to start working, to start applying to work as a freelancer employee, as a freelancer professional. Because you will only understand the things that you are weak or not if you try, if you apply, and if you give you the chance to understand. So you don't have anything to lose, probably. If you feel comfortable, go ahead and apply. So that's my personal point of view and my experience. Life change is fine. We are not used to that, but we need to understand that at some point we have to. And now I'm going to try to summarize a few important things that you need to understand in order to get started with your freelancer career, actually. So if you still have doubts, you can try to talk with your friends. If your friends are already freelancers, talk with them, ask questions, solve your doubts. Friends are like an important way to speak and understand in a trustable way to get the correct answers. So don't hesitate and talk with your freelancer friends. They will help you to understand how it is working as a freelancer. Another important thing that you should do when you start working as a freelancer is to make a small retrospective of your proudest achievements in your career. Because you probably have something that you are proud of, something that you work, something that you feel that is good enough to spread to the world. And you have to use that in your own benefit. We're going to talk about in the next few topics, we're going to talk about setting up a business and things like that. But when you start your freelancer career, you need to think that you are your own company, right? And you need to put yourself in front of everything. So we need to show up to the world, to your clients, what you are capable to do. So that's the biggest thing. So try to understand what are your biggest achievements in your career and use them in your own benefit. Starting your freelancer career is another thing that we need to care. And it's not simple as that. Because sometimes you see someone that is working as a freelancer and you'd like to work in the same way. But maybe you are not prepared to that. And one of the important things you have to do in order to start your career is define your goals. So I think you need to understand if you are ready to start and you need to understand if you're ready to start this new adventure in your life. And what I am saying with those is that you can think of you in the next like in the near future, maybe in the next year or in the next five years or more. But see you as a personal, in a personal perspective and in a professional perspective. What you'd like to achieve with that moving your usual office career to your freelancer career. These things need to be very clear. And it helps you every day of your freelancer work. Because when you have any kind of objective or like a goal, you can fight for it in a bad way, in your best way, right? I think another important stuff is that you don't need to be, you don't need to, you don't need, but I highly recommend you to start your freelancer with networks such as TopTel or these kind of networks that can help you to find clients. And also they, these kind of networks can help you to find great clients as well. So we can talk a little bit in much detail further away, but for example, inside TopTel and then again, I am using this example because I am on it. We don't need to care about finding clients. You don't need to care about invoicing clients and this kind of stuff. We're going to deal with everything else for you. So your main focus will be your technical expertise, right? So this is one good tip that I have for you. Find these kind of networks. These kind of networks can help you a lot and decrease the amount of work, extra work, office work that you have to do in your days. Another important thing and it's connected to one of the topics I just mentioned is to create your personal brand. So you can create your personal website, for example, and place there everything that you think that it's relevant for your career. You can talk about yourself, you can have a blog, for example, and express your ideas and your thoughts about technical stuff. You can also place your projects, the things that you have done in the past and stuff like that. So having a personal website is another good way to start working as a freelancer. Again, I believe you should not wait to apply, right? There is a lot of freelancer networks. We talk a lot about some of them on this workshop. Get prepared and start applying. Try to understand if you are like a good match to work as a freelancer by applying, right? So, yeah, I think that's the summary of getting started. But also there is something that I would like to share with you, which is the kind of preparation in order to start working as a freelancer. Because work remotely is like a great challenge to everyone, mainly for those who haven't had this experience before. Some days your work will flow beautifully, but in some other days it will not. And you have to face these kind of interruptions or unexpected situations. You have to learn with that and avoid what makes you stressed, for example. Also, you need to find your best way, your pace to be productive. And most important, you need to understand that you need to be committed to the job. I mean, not only how many hours you spend, but you need to understand that you need to be committed with your deliverables, with the things you have been assigned to do. And your clients will expect you to see that, right, in a way that you define with them. So that's another important thing. You need to be prepared to talk and speak, of course. Always you need to keep an open channel with your clients. So you need to make them aware about what's happening. If something weird happens, you need to let them know as soon as possible. The same way, if you have any kind of doubts, for example, you are working on a specific task or in a specific project and you have doubts, you need to have this kind of open channel with the clients and make the things run correctly. Also, you need to understand the importance of time, organization, and focus. Always, if possible, try to plan your day in advance, in a night before, or you can use a tool, whenever tool you prefer or technique, but it's important to put it in practice. You have to do this every day, including on Saturdays and Sundays, right? Because I can use my example, because, for example, I always try to finish my day reviewing the things I have to do tomorrow. That way, I can predict some situations in advance and run through them as soon as possible. So this is only a tip in order to you understand that you need to be prepared for this, and you're going to need to deal with that as well. You need to be your kind of own project manager, and this is one big challenge in the way that we start working in this kind of career. Another important thing that you need to understand is that community is always your best choice. As I already mentioned in some point of this talk, in the communities, you can stay in touch and meet new people. You can exchange your ideas, help other people, and just stay aware about what's happening. You don't need to be shy. Everyone has to have the rights to express yourself and ask for something. No one has the only truth of something. So everything can be improved in some way when you talk about development, when you talk about engineering. Always. We can refactor something. We can make any re-engineering process to improve something. Another important thing is language, right? If you're here, you probably understand English, but you might not feel comfortable to speak in English, for example. So as you probably already know, English is one of the global languages we have in these days. So it's basic. It's a language that it's not only English for technical terms. You need to know how to express yourself, how to communicate. And yeah, that's basically one thing that you need to care. And if you are not well versed on that, you should start working in order to improve that. Language is one of the most important things. For example, inside TopTel, we only admit people that have a certain specific English skill. Otherwise, you will not move forward on the screening process. And also, I put this on my talk because I think this is very important. Again, in some point of my speech, I told you guys that I work more than 60 hours per week. And that is not something beautiful. I put myself in a place that I thought that would be something okay, but it was not. So in some part of your freelancer career, you work more because you discovered that you can do more, right? You can move, you can go do further. You can work more hours than usual. And if that happens, be careful. Be very careful on that because sometimes you're going to feel empty and exhausted. I'm not lying. The burnout syndrome can reach anyone. So try to have pleasant days. Make quick pauses between one accomplishment to another. You can plan, for example, to take some time off and have like a small vacation, as Tim Ferry says on his book, the four-hour work week, I think. And remember, your mental health is it worth more than anything. So you can work on something if you are not okay with yourself or if you are well with your health. I think in summary, in terms of preparation, there is three main things that you need to understand deeply how they work, which are basic discipline, motivation, and also have a good place to work. So you have these three kinds of stuff and you understand deeply how they work. I think you might be able to start working in this kind of freelancer career. I would like to add on that that sometimes you need to find a power that exists inside of you and make the change to start something new. And if you're choosing to move from your usual office career to a freelancer, you don't have to give up. You can try to keep moving forward, even if the things doesn't happen as you expect them to happen. So basic is that in terms of preparation. Now I can have Shane to help me with some of the business approach for freelancers. What do you think? Or you'd like to open the floor for questions? What do you prefer, Shane? Yeah, thanks Rodrigo. That was great. I think I like what you covered there a lot. I think experience, resume, preparation. And the one thing you said that was so important is mindset, just making that decision. And I do believe the best way to enter into the freelancing world is to just get started. Maybe you're already working, just get started on the side and just dip your toes in the water, unless you really, really truly want to just dive in with both feet, and you're able to do that. And some people are, everybody's different. However, there's a couple things on here I do want to cover in getting started that I think are important. And some of these, just as an aside, may apply more to US folks than they would an Eastern European person because of just the nature of insurance. So let me cover that real quick. So the first thing in getting started, and this is if, even if you're just doing this part-time, even if you're just going to go over to Fiverr or Upwork and you just want to get your feet wet and try it out, or perhaps you're going to go for top towel, you need to think about what it means to be a freelancer. And that means you yourself are an entity, you're a business. So what you need to do is register yourself as a business. It can be different in every country. I'm sure it is. Here in the US, you would register as an LLC and be a sole proprietor. And again, there are tons and tons of resources to help do that, or you can do it on your own. But that's the first step. Take care of that first. Make sure, and it's as simple, you could even make it your name. So you could be John Smith LLC. You don't have to come up with a fancy business name. It's just for yourself. Legal Zoom is one of the resources mentioned, but there's many others to do that. So business structure, take care of that first. And really, it's pretty cheap, and it exists to protect yourself. So secondly, a big concern, and I've been asked this many, many, many times, is insurance. What do I do about health insurance? Now, in some cases, most likely Rodrigo, Alex, like they mentioned, they have that covered for them. If you're in a situation where you don't, there are resources. So one thing people do, for example, is they start freelancing while they're still on health insurance from their company. So again, this goes back to people's questions about, can I do this part-time? Therefore, you're protected in that sense. A lot of people that are married join their spouse's plan. That's another thing people do. And sometimes there's a cost to that. If you don't fit into any of those, there are plans out there, regardless of where you are, that now are focused on sole proprietors and freelancing, and what they are is marketplaces. They will go out and look for health insurance plans that can fit your budget. So this goes all the way back to the beginning where we talked about setting rates. When you're setting your rate of pay, you build in, in your hourly rate, you build in so that you are able to take care of these things on your own, and that's entirely possible. So that's just from the health insurance. So it's not impossible to find it. It depends how you approach it and what plans you get, but because you're freelancing, you're going to be charging more. Let's just say at a company, you're making $45 an hour, and I'm talking US fees. When you're freelancing, you might charge 95. So what you're doing is you're building in that room for yourself to be able to pay for these things. Now, the very last thing is taxes, and I think that this generally would affect everybody because we've all got them. If you don't have taxes, please let me know. I want to move there. So the general rule is this. Everybody says this. Again, when you set your rate, plan for this. So what you would do is you would just, a lot of people do this. They save. Oh, thanks, Julia. That's great. That's really low. When you do this, your freelancing career, what they say is 20% to 30%, put it aside. So whatever you're earning, take 20% to 30% of that and push it to the side. Again, this comes all the way back to setting your rate. If you set your rate high where it should be as a freelancer, you will be able to take that 20% or 30%, put it away, and you're still not going to affect your bottom income. So the other thing is, and I'll mention this, because you're a sole proprietor, you can write down certain expenses. For example, if you're traveling for work, meals that you might have had for work. So you want to keep your receipts. You want to keep everything. These days, honestly, there's apps that do it. You can just take an image. It's so easy. It used to be you had to keep all the paper. Maybe you still do in your country, but here I know we can take a picture using an app. So if any of that is daunting, just remember, all of this has been done. I mean, Rodrigo's done it. Alex has done it. I'm sure in some way, form, or fashion, and it's 100% possible. Don't let it dissuade you from freelancing. These are tiny barriers to overcome. So again, these are big blocks for a lot of people, and I would say this, every day it gets better and better as the freelancing community grows. Again, you saw the numbers. We're already at 67 million freelancers. That's a lot of people. I don't know, Rodrigo or Alex, if you wanted to add anything to that at all, because I'm, again, talking from the perspective of US point of view. Yeah, I can talk about my perspective, which is the Brazilian perspective. I would say basically the same thing, almost the same thing. I prefer to organize my earnings in this kind of percentage for each thing I want to use all my life. And apart from that, in terms of taxes, where I live specifically, this is not for all the whole Brazil, but where I live specifically, we have some incentives for digital companies, for technical companies that work with external companies, like for outside Brazil. And that way we can pay lowest taxes than the usual companies, too, because we're exporting ourselves. This might work in the same way for other countries, but that's one thing that happened here. Yeah, I guess, not to kind of label the point, it's similar here. I think all the principles you said the same. I think it's also worth just looking out to see. Here you can either be a sole trader or director of a limited company. And there's benefits to each side. Also, one of the benefits I experience is that you don't have to pay VAT if your income is, well, if your income is over a certain amount, you have to pay VAT. I have to register for it. But if it's only for UK income, so if your income is coming from overseas and essentially top-tail pays us from the client, so it's US income, so you don't pay VAT on that, which is a benefit. What I would say is, on that point, is that is probably something that is quite behind the times. So when you are considering these things, just realize that it's likely that the government at some point will catch up to what's happening, and it may be that you will end up paying taxes that you've found a loophole around because of freelance work not being in the main as much as it is now. Alex, Rodrigo, do you guys deal with all this yourself, or do you think that, like, I know top-tail pays you, so you get something from top-tail. Does it help you with sorting out taxes and stuff, or do you guys just find somebody to help you with this? How do you deal with that? I have an accountant. I have an accountant. Okay, so you basically just let someone else deal with it. Yep. Okay, thanks. Does that seem to be very expensive, or what do you think? So in relative terms, no. I think I pay about £1,700 a year, so about $2,000, or just over $2,000 a year, and the amount of work that they do compared to how much work I would have to do if I did it myself, plus all the fines I'd get if I did it wrong, it more than covers it, and again, it's priced into, I mean, £1,700 a year is 100-something, 130, whatever, a month. I mean, I would make that on with a couple of hours' work, so in relative terms, it makes sense to do it that way. I know people that try to do it themselves and ended up with huge fines from HMRC or in that revenue, so it's not worth risking it. Yeah, and I think Julia had a good point that, but I think to your point, Julia, it's probably cheaper. Accountants charge different rates in different places, and again, you don't need an accountant. You could do something like a QuickBooks or your version of, I mean, I'm not sure where you're at, so there's many different ways, though, to take the burden off your shoulders. Yeah, okay, yeah, she gets the point. Okay, great. So why don't we go, Alex, and switch over here to talking about some common pathways to getting to your career. I think this will be interesting, again, for a lot of people on here, because they may be thinking about getting into this as a career. So, Alex, go for it, and I'm going to change the slides here so that we get this. We get this. Here we go. Here's Alex. Cool. Thank you very much. So I've approached this from kind of my pathway, my main pathway into getting into this as a full-time career. I'm going to try to do it in the steps that I think make the most amount of sense. So the first thing for me is to organize and understand your own finances, and it's what I call, I think you've probably heard the term, a personal survival budget. Understanding what you need to earn to live or maintain your lifestyle at whatever level you want to be at as a minimum. You need to have an understanding of what that means, both monthly and how that would translate hourly as well. So, for example, you may want to work out what it is you need to earn per month. As we said before, we want to add on all the things like, well, that's after tax. You need to then include taxes. You may need to have, consider health insurance depending on where you live, and the other benefits you want to maintain as well, what the cost of those would be if you're not going to be getting them from an employer. And then you break that down into what the hourly rate would be based on how many hours you want to work, because ultimately you're not contracted to a 40 hours per week or 37 and a half hours per week job now. You now decide the hours you want to work. So if you have your monthly survival budget and decide you want to work five hours a week, then your rate's going to be quite high. But if that's what you want to do, that's how you base it. If you're willing to work more hours, then obviously you could put a lower rate and you'd be able to get more work initially. But what I'd say is strip it down to what is I consider to be the bare bones. And that's what I did. I kind of really worked out what I needed to earn to maintain the level of lifestyle that I wanted to live at that time. And that was my initial start when I started looking into freelance work. The second thing is to really do your homework and understand the market for your skill set. Now that isn't to try and replicate the job that you have, because the job that you have at a company is not based on you, it's based on the company. So what the company needs, right? They have a number of projects or even if it's kind of BAE operations and they need you to do something or they need something done and then they will find someone who can do that job. There will be things within that job that maybe you aren't great at that you currently do and there might be things that you are really good at and things in the middle, things that you don't enjoy, things that you do enjoy. Strip it back and kind of reverse it and look at the market for your specific skill set. What are you good at? What do you enjoy? What do you want to be able to do going forward? And then try and start looking for, just Google search will show you what the market is like for those particular skills. So start searching for skills rather than jobs. You can find online as well, you can find that kind of a skills audit and it'll kind of ask you questions as well and you can go through that to be able to make it easier for you. But it's really important to understand what things you are qualified to do and you're able to demonstrate that you can do as well even if you're not qualified and you can kind of assess the demand for those individual skills. And then a portfolio is important and a portfolio is not just a resume or a CV. It's important that you're able to put together and show the results that you have been able to produce from your work. So products that you've worked on, the people that you've worked with and what the outcome was from the work that you did. And of course in the types of roles that we're looking at here, developer roles, you should be able to, unless the companies have closed down or whatever, you should be able to show websites or software or mobile apps or whatever it is that you've done, you'd be able to have something demonstrable and you want to be able to create links and add links to that as well. You want to put that all together so it's readily available and easy to access. Of course if you're new to the industry that you're working in, you may not have a lot of this but there will be ways that you can of course show this. I mean even github repositories and things that you may have worked on, you're able to show this and the more you are able to add to your portfolio of course the stronger your case will be for the rate that you want to achieve. Do you want to do questions at the end Shane? Did you want to answer the questions that are coming up at the end or yeah, I think so yeah. Okay I'll keep going. And I also just realized that we are like, I don't even know how this time flew. No worries, I'll fly through this then. So after you've got this portfolio together and you understand your skill set and what the mind is for the skill set, you don't want to start looking at where you can drop your skills essentially, where you can get people to find work for you. I think registering with agencies, I think as Rodrigo has touched on earlier, is really important., all the ones that spoke about Upwork, TopTile, because I think as again it varies depending on which agencies and networks we work with but one of the benefits for me about TopTile as opposed to the stuff that I do separately, because I do work separately as well, one of the benefits of TopTile is I know that if I do the work I'm going to get paid, I don't have to worry about whether the client is going to kind of not pay the invoice or anything like that. I know that I'm going to get paid and I don't have to chase those things. That work alone with other work that I do takes 10-15 hours a week sometimes. That's work that I'll be doing on a Saturday or Sunday which I would rather not be. So registering with those agencies, they will find you work, they'll do a lot of the leg work as well. They thrive on the fact that they have clients, they will need clients and then once you get a reputation with these companies, within these companies, as Rodrigo has and as I have within TopTile, the work will find you. One of the projects that I worked on that Shane touched on earlier was the MedTech project. So I was working on augmented reality software for orthopaedic surgery. Really innovative, nothing else out there at the time that was even similar. I wasn't an expert in augmented reality, I wasn't an expert in MedTech, but I delivered that project to such a high degree that now within the network and within TopTile, if a project comes across someone's desk and it's a MedTech project or it's an augmented reality project or even virtual reality or something similar, I'm usually the first one they call. They will look to see if I'm available to get on that project because I've done that work within the network. So the networks, depending on the quality of the networks, they do remember who you are and they will find work for you. That I guess goes into the second, the next thing I was going to say about making yourself irresistible. You really want to build your own personal brand and make yourself stand out. Go above and beyond on the work that you do. At first, when you're getting your foot in the door, I guess it's the same for many industries, but when you're getting your foot in the door, go work longer hours and pick up things that maybe aren't within your direct job description and be willing to help outwork everyone else within the team. You want to be able to be the last one to leave and the first one to arrive kind of thing. I know it's remote, but that kind of mindset puts you in the front of people's minds and the matches within these networks and the clients that you get will remember that. You also will get referrals as well. I've got so many referrals from clients I worked with with TopTile that I've got work outside of TopTile as well, just by virtue of working with these clients. They will remember you when you do a good job for them. So make sure you get referrals as well. Part of that is, part of making yourself irresistible is setting the rate and how you approach setting your rate. I set my rate pretty low, so it was competitive initially. This worked in well with my survival budget because I knew what I needed to earn. It was less than what I would like to earn, but it was what I needed to earn. I was able to take my rate pretty low, get my foot in the door because I was cheaper than everyone else, and then the clients were able to realise my value. I got great referrals from them because not only was the work great, but it was actually great value for money because I was so cheap. Great referrals from them. Then I started to put my rate up as I got more and more referrals and a better reputation within the network. And again, the final piece of that is just to present the best version of your work. So you always want to be able to show really high point about the things that you're really good at and you really enjoy and make sure you demonstrate those things as much as possible. So you really do become irresistible to the clients going forward. The next piece on that is to scale up. I'm going to spread the risk of scale up, and this is something that someone touched on earlier about is it difficult to find part-time work. I only take on part-time projects, and I have done for the last three and a half years for two reasons, or at least two reasons. One of them is if I'm working on three part-time projects and there's a funding problem with one of them, or the CEO gets arrested or whatever it is, and the project stops suddenly, I haven't lost all my income. I lost a project, but I've still got two others. So the risk is spread over a number of projects there. The other reason as well is it's the variability. It's the variability of being able to work on different things. So I may decide that I don't want to work full-time anymore for a while. I might decide I only want to work 20 hours a week. So when two more projects finish, I'll then work on one part-time project, and I may take some holiday time and compress my hours into Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and take Thursdays and Fridays off every week, and I could potentially do that. Then decide I want to work more, I want to earn some more money, so then take another project and scale back up again. That's a good way of also moving from being employed to being full-time freelancers, because you may pick up an hourly engagement that's five hours a week, 10 hours a week, and work that around your full-time salary job until you have enough experience and confidence and expertise to be able to pick up more work and do work more hours. Then move to part-time engagement, and if your survival budget allows and your rate's right, you might be able to then move out of your full-time job into a part-time engagement only. I know that I did, what I would make in a part-time engagement was 20 hours a week was more than what I was earning in a full-time salary job, so that's how I kind of scaled into doing this full-time. I guess the last piece that I touched on, but it's really trying to get your rate to market value. Once you are comfortable and confident and you have the reputation, you can then start assessing, well, this is the quality of the work I'm delivering, and try and find out a bit more about what others are charging as well, and increase your rate to market value, and you can start making some more money. Questions? Should I keep going? Yep, okay. So, setting the rate and getting the work. So, again, it goes back down to doing the research. Look at freelance roles, look at the various sites, and look at the various skill sets as well. So, search for the roles, certain skill sets, and see what the kind of going rate is. As I said, you want to get your foot in the door with a competitive rate so that you are getting work, so you can build your portfolio, and add to that portfolio I mentioned earlier with more and more work, especially if you can show a good track record of a lot of work, you're more likely to get more work going forward, and you can start building your reputation at that rate. You want to speak to others in a similar role, which is great if you're in a network like TopTile, because you can get feedback on what they're charging and how they're finding freelance work and getting work, places they're looking. Although you're technically competing with them, people are surprisingly helpful when they feel part of a community, and so by having that, you'll be able to get more work and understand what the correct rates are to be charging. One thing that I always do as well is I have my set rate that I put out on everything, but I do ensure that anyone matching me to a job knows that I'm flexible, and for the right project, it's not all about the money, as Rodrigo said a number of times. Of course the money has to be right, but there is a limit, and I think I'm flexible enough on a lot of the projects that I would go for, because anything I've decided to go for is a project that I'd want to work on. So if it's something that you're interested in, or something that's maybe trending, something that's maybe in the zeitgeist and is interesting, that could provide you opportunities going forward, like with the AR project, like with the NFT projects on the blockchain. Being able to get on those, you may want to drop your rates so that you're able to beat out the competition, get that piece of work, and then you can put your rate back up when you're going forward. You have experience in that particular area. I touched on it as well about getting testimonials. Really important to get testimonials because you can then build your profile, build your reputation, and with those two things going up, your rates can go up, and you're able to justify your rate. And then, yeah, I guess, again, I touched on this before, when you start to increase your rate, do it in increments, test the waters, speak to, obviously, you've spoken to people, speak to people, and see as you increase it, if it seems feasible. There will obviously be an upper limit to what you can charge per hour, but try and get to that in increments. Don't jump from $20 an hour to $100 an hour in one go because, one, it's scary, and two, you may find that you're not getting any work, and then knee-jerk reaction back down to $25 an hour. So do it in increments, but make sure you are increasing your rate along with the market as well. Thanks, Alex. I think you also mentioned a couple of these as just, you know, yeah, these are like the next steps, I would say. Yeah, so make sure you're part of the network and speaking to people frequently as well. Look at what's trending, so subscribe to TechCrunch and listen to podcasts and everything so you understand where the industry is going as a freelance industry, but also the thing that you're working in specifically. So I'm part of the Project Management Institute, all of those things to see, and I read the things that come through on those, and upscale. and, Coursera, Udemy, all those sites, they all have courses, a lot of them for free as well, to be able to upscale and maintain that you are kind of at the forefront and know best practice. Yeah, exactly, because, I mean, you have to stay in the loop. That's also how you make connections, and you can also find clients that way. And again, this depends on the network you're in, of course. So Julia did, I just want to get this, Julia did have an answer. She goes, what do you expect to get done in an hour? Who's that for? Julia, I think it was for both of either of you, but... So for me, it's like, for me, it's slightly different. I guess, I guess maybe in some ways it's similar. Although we build hourly, the work is judged on a longer time period, right? They're not going to look at what you did this hour and the next hour and hour after that, but what they want to see is at the end of the sprint, whether it's a week or two weeks, that a certain amount of work is done. And ultimately, over a period of time, you'll be looking at getting the project completed to set a standard. So I guess, if you have a client who's looking at a granular level of wanting to see what you do every hour, I would advise finding a different project. You probably want to look at what you can achieve over a longer time period, and that's something that is negotiable and expected to, client by client, project by project. Rodrigo, did you have a comment on that? Yeah, sure. So actually, it's hard to say what we can get done in an hour, for example. Because every kind of work is different than the others, right? So I think it's very much the things you just mentioned. So we have to understand like the situation we are and then try to understand how much time you're going to spend on that for understand this kind of estimate. It's basically that, but it's hard to say.
145 min
28 Oct, 2021

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