This week’s book review is the Unconventional Guide to Freelancing. For the guide Chris Guillebeau teams up with Charlie Gilkey on a new guide to the business of freelancing. I’ve had the pleasure of reading the new guide and wanted to share and review some of my thoughts on it.
By the way, this will the last new online release from Chris for this year, as he’s preparing for his book tour this fall. I’m looking forward to being there when he stops in Raleigh in October.
What’s Included in the Unconventional Guide to Freelancing?
Like Chris’ other guides, UGF has a mix of written and audio content to give you a well rounded product.
- PDF Manual
- A Checklist for Agreements, Contracts, and Policies
- PDFs with Additional “Recommended Resources” and “Lessons Learned”
- 3-5 Audio Interviews
- PDF Transcripts of Interviews
I’m personally a fan of this approach, because I love having the mp3s on my iPod to listen to during the day and then I can go back and review the transcripts to catch any useful detail I missed. His goals for freelancers with this guide are:
- Relieve the pain of operations and client stress
- Rock out your freelance biz with an improved strategy
- Do more of what you love; get paid more to do it
- Manage your money as you build a master plan
- Most importantly—do your own work in your own way
Unconventional Guide to Freelancing – Overview
It’s more oriented towards those who already are freelancing. The topics here move quickly, with Chris and Charlie going for more of a tactical approach. Some topics covered in the guide include:
- Landing Clients and Getting Paid
- Managing Your Money
- Maximize Output Rather Than Workload
- Pricing Services Properly
- Raising Rates
As you can see, the guide focuses around marketing and finances. While specific tax guidelines for every country can’t be included, he does have some useful information for US freelancers. You can get started with this and as you grow, hire the necessary professionals, like a bookkeeper or accountant.
Who is the Unconventional Guide to Freelancing For?
I will say upfront that this guide is not for everyone; it’s specifically designed for freelancers looking to build (click here if you want to grab a copy). If you’re new to freelancing or you need some specific guidance on your trade, this isn’t the guide. This guide deals more with how to run the business side of freelancing.
If you’re looking for a payroll system on handling the feast & famine cycle of revenue, this is your guide. If you’re hoping to get invoices paid quicker, then you’ll want this guide. If you’re looking at more of the beginning steps, Working for Yourself will get you started. If you’re looking to build a business from the ground up over the long haul, Empire Building Kit (my review), is the ticket.
I’d love to hear your feedback on the guide! I’d also want to hear your stories on being a successful freelancer. What have you’ve found extremely helpful to growing your business?