Author: Ben Shanbrom

How to Smartly Raise Your Rate (and Handle Unsustainable Clients)

Across the gig economy we hear a lot of advice about standing up for fair compensation and not allowing thrifty clients to have their way with our time and mental stability. It’s easy enough to tell that schmuck who’s been ungratefully bossing you around for the last six weeks to take a hike (in a professional manner), but what if the people in question really aren’t nightmare clients? What if these clients were a couple of your early breaks that really helped you get your business off the ground and now unfortunately take up more of your time than you...

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Setting Up For Success At The Start of a New Project – The Initial Consultation

Client relationships have long been compared to the dynamics of a healthy romance. Whether or not you buy into the fluffy parallel, so much of the projected success of an independent contractor-client relationship stems from that first big interaction — not unlike the high stakes “first date.” In many ways the initial consultation sets the expectations on both sides and either creates a dynamic of trust going forward or a shaky foundation that can hinder progress and stir up frustration on both sides across the lifespan of the project. We’ve put together a big-picture checklist of topics you should make...

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Health Insurance for Freelancers — The No-Nonsense Primer

December means we are now just weeks away from the end of 2017’s open enrollment period. That means it’s time to think about health insurance for freelancers, which, much like errors and omissions insurance, can be stressful topic — there’s a lot to know and plenty to consider when choosing the right plan. In light of the approaching end of open enrollment on January 31st, let’s cut through some of the worry and survey the best options available to the self-employed independent contractor. Do I reaaaallly need health insurance? You sure do! In addition to the basic purpose of health insurance (to protect you...

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Scale Your Business: Lessons in Growth from a Virtual Assistant

Gina Horkey is a full-time business writer and virtual assistant who, like many of us, made a significant career shift in the last couple of years toward a work arrangement and lifestyle that better suited her personal needs and interests. Horkey describes herself as a “married, millennial mama to two precocious toddlers” as well as a professional writer and webpreneur. Her migration from office warrior to digital maven might feel familiar in many respects to the indis in our readership, but it’s exactly the kind of story we find most interesting at Nation1099 — exploration of the forces that...

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Clean Up Your Skype Etiquette – Tips For a Professional Video Conferencing Persona

What’s better than conferencing in from a pair of fuzzy cartoon trousers? Not saying I do that or anything, but you know what I mean . . . Personal freedom and flexibility are the kinds of perks consultants and freelancers often tote but there are of course days when we really need to look and act the part. Video interviews and meetings fall squarely into this category. Skype calls can be a great way to inspire trust in potential clients. Along with the all-important first consultation they can sometimes make or break a deal. The good news is Skype...

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