Author: Ben Shanbrom

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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The SEP-IRA explained — Retirement Planning For the SoloPrenueur

With our trusty laptops in hand, and potentially frozen cocktails in the other, there aren’t many things that can bring us down. Sure, paying self-employment taxes as a freelancer can be a pain and deciding if you need business insurance as an independent consult is a tough call. But all things considered, life could be worse — except, oh shoot, what are we doing about retirement? A lot of professionals new to consulting work, while they were employed, were used to the employer match adding to their retirement savings and to the tax advantages of that and their own contributions...

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Self Promotion 101 for Shy Freelancers

Thanks to the blogosphere and TED Talks (Susan Cain’s The Power of Introverts is the one everyone knows) we introverts no longer need to apologize for or excuse particular social preferences to society at large. Unsurprisingly, introverts account for a vast portion of the freelance and consulting realms. We use our creative inner dialogues and personal space to drive our output. It works for us and other people like the results of our processes. Unfortunately, there are some areas where our inward focus doesn’t always help — marketing ourselves can be one of them. While being our own advocate...

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