Unpacking Freelancing Part 2
Freelancing in the Zimbabwean Context
Before we look at the freelancing in the Zimbabwean context here is a quick recap of what was covered in Part 1.
- Firstly, freelancing refers to a profession where a person independently offers his or her skills, expertise and services to clients outside of or without formal full time employment.
- Secondly, the following are the types of freelancers
- Side-project freelancers: Those that are fully employed and do freelancing on the side.
- Full time freelancers: Those that are self-employed full time.
- Single contract freelancers: These generally work for one client at a time for a fixed term contract.
- Freelance Business Owner: These are the people who leverage on offering services to freelancers to enable their freelancing. For example 7 Wonders Market
- The following the countries with the biggest numbers of freelancers
- India ~ 24%
- Bangladesh ~ 16%
- USA ~ 12%
- Pakistan ~ 8.6%
- Philippines ~ 6%
- UK ~ 5.7%
- We also talked about the reasons why people freelance.
To read in detail please revisit Part 1.
Having done our recap let us dive into today’s business. We are taking freelancing to our homeland Zimbabwe.
The Zimbabwean Problem
Zimbabwe is one of the African countries with high percentages of educated and experienced people or workforce. In the past few years companies have been closing down due to the unfavourable economic conditions prevailing in the country. People have not stopped going to universities and colleges to study.
This therefore means we have an increased number of educated people with a dwindling employment base on the other hand. This has resulted in significant human capital flight from the country to other countries to seek “greener pastures.”
A reality that is now striking home is that even in the other countries where people were finding employment, things are no longer all that rosy. Many developed countries are now battling with the influx of immigrants. People from developing countries are flooding their countries offering cheap labour resulting in unrest in the citizens of those countries who are losing their jobs to these immigrants.
Now that we know our problem, what’s next?
Is our situation that bleak?
Nope. There is good news for the skilled people of Zimbabwe. Read on.
Having been presented with these problems on both fronts we can see that continuing to migrate to other countries is not going to be a long lasting solution to Zimbabweans. Rather it is time for Zimbabweans to realize the potential that our country and its workforce has.
Instead of continuing to cry for employment and for the government to create jobs for the people, our situation calls for a shift in mind set. It is high time that we put off the entitlement mentality and adapt to our current situation, become innovative and thrive in present and forthcoming situations.
Am I advocating for people to accept the status quo as a permanent situation?
What I am suggesting is far from that. What I am saying is that as Zimbabweans we should not just cry that there is no employment but we should start organising ourselves, just like other people in other countries have done, and start making more money from our skills and expertise.
India has done it. So has Bangladesh, USA, Pakistan and so on.
What can stop us?
Nothing but ourselves. The time is now. The fact that our people are readily accepted wherever they go and commended for their skills means that we have a powerful resource base.
What Zimbabwe Needs
The first thing that Zimbabweans need to accept is that things are changing world over. Companies are constantly looking for ways of cutting their costs. This may include employing technology that cuts on the labour force.
Not only that!World over there is talk of artificial intelligence. How safe and secure is your job going to be? The advent and advancement of technology has also made the world a global village. This means that companies are no longer confined by borders for them to seek the services that they want. This also means increased competition world over.
Change of Mind Set
The most important observation is that all the forms of change start within the mind. If a person decides to do something, he becomes unstoppable. He will do whatever he can to accomplish his goals.
Changing from being a country of poor employees to a country of successful freelancers begins with change of mind set.
An employee mentality is a strong handicap which one needs to deal with if he or she is to succeed in freelancing.
Most importantly, crave for the freedom, for the flexibility, for the more income and for the other open doors.
Zimbabwe therefore needs people who are tired of looking for employment, who are ready to embrace a new life of entrepreneurship with their skills as their first resource.
Now that I have the desire then what?
Inventory of Available Skills
In any situation just like in war, a person needs to take stock of what he has to his advantage.
First of all, what skill and expertise do I possess?
Secondly who needs those skills or who can I sell them to?
Thirdly how can I sell the skills?
And for how much can I sell them?
In addition what assistance do I need in selling the skills and expertise I possess?
Furthermore where can I get the assistance?
Well the assistance you need is not very far!
The next important step after taking stock of what we have at our disposal, is to get organised. We could be making more money right now than we are if we had put enabling systems in place.
Do the clients know where to find freelancers?
How are freelancers advertising their services?
Clients should be able to find a freelancer with ease in the comfort of their homes or offices or anywhere. The 6 countries mentioned earlier they have done this well.
First example is when I advertised last year, on LinkedIn, that I needed a website designer to help me with designing my website, the bulk of the people who responded to my advert were Indians in India. Most noteworthy is how aggressive they were in marketing themselves. In addition they had trails of references for projects that they did in the past.
Second example is about the people who give me customer support where I host my website. They are Indians and Bangladesh living in their countries but the hosting company is in America.
That is the power of getting organised!
So how do we do it?
Good news, there is 7 Wonders Market which helps with this.
I will show you how.
- Marketing increases visibility on the market.
- In addition it arms people with information that works to your advantage.
- Furthermore it tells people where and how to find you.
- Moreover it tells people who you really are, what you do and what you have on offer.
- After the freelance profession gets organised, marketing those skills becomes easy.
- The voice of many people is easier heard than the voice of one person.
More good news!
7 Wonders Market is there to help with marketing also.
Here is how 7 Wonders Market aims to take freelancing to a higher level.
7 Wonders Market and Freelancing
7 Wonders Market is Zimbabwe’s Home of Freelancers!
It is the community to join to take your freelancing to the next level.
What does it benefit me to join 7 Wonders market?
Well there are a lots of benefits and here are just a few.
- Firstly 7 Wonders Market will take you through the basics of freelancing and help you to set up freelance business from scratch.
- Secondly 7 Wonders Market helps you to easily market yourself better than you can do by yourself.
- Another benefit is that the platform allows the members to share ideas that help grow your freelancing business.
- In addition you can easily find other freelancers to team up with and tackle bigger projects.
Okay what are you waiting for?
Register to join 7 Wonders Market today and be strategically positioned for success as a freelancer. Click Here to register.
You may be saying that, “I have no idea how to begin.”
We have you covered please read the article Basics of Freelancing.