FreelancersFreelancing

The Most Important Soft Skills Freelancers Need to Develop

4 Mins read

Your success as a freelancer in Dubai is wholly dependent on you. You might be the expert in your relevant field, with a lot of experience, and you probably think that you will have a stellar career ahead of you. While this notion tends to make us feel confident about our freelancing career, that is just like having half of the battle won

Freelancing has a lot to offer, including the freedom to choose how one works and who they wish to work with. Such a notion tends to build up the hopes of beginners in the game. However, this is a presumption that makes sense when one has jobs from loyal (or regular) clients and is in a position to get and keep more ‒ who might even be better. 

So what does one have to do for them to succeed in the freelancing world? Well, you must be fully equipped to face the myriad of engagements and tasks ahead of you. Freelancers, just like all other professionals, have to focus on soft skills. The benefits of soft skills for freelancers are many regardless of the career route one takes. They play a crucial role when you’re searching for new clients and for learning how to build good, long-lasting relationships with them.

It is no brainer that soft skills are, on many occasions, overlooked. They often do not come with any qualification requirements but are as important as any degree, diploma, or any other type of certification. They are either learned through work or life experiences. Since you will be interacting with very many kinds of people in your line of work, such skills enable you to interact effectively and harmoniously with all of them.

According to the experts, some soft skills are more crucial for freelancers in the UAE than others. Here are the 5 most important soft skills for every freelancer

1. Effective communication skills

Effective communication ‒ whether spoken or written, is an essential requirement for any job setup. Whichever career direction one wishes to follow, having effective communication skills is the separating factor between success or mediocrity. One needs to know how to correctly pass and react to messages to and from their peers, clients, etc. The technology-driven world has made it possible for seamless communication through mails, over the phone, and other channels that support virtual meetings such as Zoom and Skype. 

As a freelancer in Dubai, constant communication with a client is a must. This shows them how professional and responsible you are. 

This skill is not only important for keeping and maintaining a good clientele base, but also when pitching for freelancing gigs from them. They say first impressions matter and since yours isn’t a physical meeting, how you talk to them makes all the difference. There are two key things to consider for effective communication; speaking clearly, and writing in a concise & informative way. This way, you never come out ambiguous, and your listeners or the recipient of the message will always be more eager to hear more from you.

Developing excellent communication skills will also help you to improve your negotiation abilities and be able to deal with those clients that think you have brought a high price tag on the table. Furthermore, such a skill enables you to understand the client’s prerequisites, the execution & implementation strategies, and how to make follow-ups. In a nutshell, just about everything about freelancing depends on how you speak, write, and listen.

2. Organization skills

One of the perks of being a freelancer is the ability to work whenever and wherever you want. You don’t have a boss that’s always on your neck whenever you decide to deviate from the work schedule. One is responsible for their own actions by keeping themselves organized and striving to get the work done. 

Being organized is all about creating a sustainable routine. One needs to plan their time accordingly and also to learn how to prioritize certain activities in order to get the work done. Luckily, there are several tools that help a freelancer to organize themselves well while in their everyday lives. 

3. Problem-solving skills

Problem-solving is an invaluable skill not only for freelancers but is also applicable to any job setup. This is the ability for one to be able to identify a problem, understand the scope of it, before coming up with a viable solution for it. In essence, this skill encompasses several others at a go. These include self-awareness, analytical thinking, creativity, conflict resolution, etc. 

This skill necessitates a lot of flexibility since, as a freelancer, you will end up working with a lot of clients from different walks of life. You will face a range of challenges, and since there is not a single universal formula for solving the issues, but you will have to be quick to turn the situation around. 

4. Stress management

This is a soft skill that doesn’t get spoken a lot about. It is a necessity if you wish to survive in the highly competitive world of freelancers in Dubai. When you are just getting started, there is a lot of stress encountered when certain routines, such as work habits, have to change. Making such an adjustment can be quite challenging at first.

Moreover, it is a no brainer that some clients will become difficult to deal with. Some will give you loads of work without fair compensation, unrealistic deadlines, etc. All these might drive someone crazy if not worked on as soon as possible. 

Finding the right balance between work and personal life is a crucial factor for freelancers. With all the distractions, the responsibilities, etc., the stress will be there. If you ever find yourself in this situation, you should understand that you are not alone, so do not let it eat you up. You can use some of the methods put forward by the professionals to help you deal with stress.

5. Teamwork and leadership

Freelancers in Dubai work together on various projects, even for the same clients. For instance, if you have been hired to develop a website, you may interact with other people in your line of work. These include the freelance web designers in Dubai, freelance content writers, etc., for the same website. This is where the importance of teamwork plays out.

Moreover, even if you are continents away from your colleagues, it is always good to step up and offer guidance, while motivating the others into realizing the set goals. 

Conclusion

Do not underestimate the power of soft skills. This is what you require to impress a potential client in the first place and will go a long way into helping you to maintain a good working relationship with them. 

The need for improvement of one’s soft skills is a never-ending journey. Some of the best freelancers in Dubai always work towards improving not only their technical training but also their soft skills.

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