Talk Nerdy to Me: How to Succeed as an Independent Contractor

Offered By Stander & Company

Are you one of the now 33% of Americans who work as either an independent contractor or freelancer?

 

If you answer yes, you are now a participant in the gig economy, a modern term for an economy characterized by workers who earn money through short-term contracts or freelance work.

 

Succeeding as an independent contractor can be challenging because it requires understanding a different set of key success factors than being a full-time employee. Here are some tips on developing your skill set as an independent contractor and where to turn to if you need help.

 

  • Contract for companies with generous payment terms. The time required for companies to pay its bills to contract workers varies from business to business. Investigate a company's policy for paying its contract workers to make sure it's what you're expecting. Remember, cash is king!

 

  • Market your services by creating an online portfolio. If being a contract worker is your full-time job, you’ll need to always be looking for your next gig. One great way to market yourself to prospective businesses is to create an online portfolio that showcases the work you can perform. You can choose to build a website using a do-it-yourself service or hire a developer to create a custom website.

 

  • Stick to a budget. As a full-time employee, you know the exact date you’ll receive your paycheck and usually the exact dollar amount. As a participant in the gig economy, however, you could earn a bunch of money in one month and hardly any money the following month. Prepare a financial budget so you can use income earned during your good months to cover costs during low income months.

 

  • Stay one step ahead of the IRS. Paying taxes is now your responsibility. Participating in the gig economy requires more knowledge about how to meet your tax obligations. So ask for professional help. Plus use other tools at your disposal. For instance, the IRS Gig Economy Tax Center gives guidance on how to figure out what you may owe the IRS. The website is https://www.irs.gov/businesses/gig-economy-tax-center.

 

  • Get advice from others. Working primarily by yourself can leave you isolated from fellow workers. Join a local group of self-employed workers that meets on a regular basis to network and learn what other workers are doing to be successful.

 

Remember that you are not alone. The complex nature of tax obligations for contractors can easily be navigated with professional help.

​​​​​​

Disclaimer

Stander & Company is not a CPA firm. Stander & Company accounting services provided through an alliance with Nicholas T Stander, CPA, PLLC

Local Business

Must Read Articles

more articles
July 27, 2018
Jewelry hobbyist transforms passion into cornerstone local women's boutique
Jewelry hobbyist transforms passion into cornerstone local women's boutique

After years of making her own jewelry, Cyrese Jezek decided it was time to take a leap of faith in herself and her talents and open her own boutique.

April 06, 2020
Chambers of Commerce: Why LocalMeA is a member of more than one
Chambers of Commerce: Why LocalMeA is a member of more than one

Before I accepted the position as President of the Greater East Montgomery County Chamber, I was often asked which chamber of commerce should their business join. My answer was always and still is, "As many as you can support and participate in!".

October 16, 2018
Fashion forward: Award-winning small business owner offers the best looks with hip, trendy boutique
Fashion forward: Award-winning small business owner offers the best looks with hip, trendy boutique

Nikole Christian was attending the University of Houston when she felt a desire to start a business. She became a small business owner at age 23, opening her store in 2012, and never looked back.

Look Who's Best of Local

more listings
Pretty Little Things Boutique

Pretty Little Things is owned by Nikole Davis Christian. She has turned her love of fashion and her dream of owning her own business into a thriving clothing and accessories store called Pretty Little Things Boutique in Kingwood, TX.

Drake A. McIntosh Digital Media

The One-Stop-Shop for Your Creative Ideas

Bugtime Pest Control Products & Services

Bugtime Termite and Pest Control has been providing termite and pest control products and services to the Houston metro community for over 16 years.

The Furniture Outlet in Humble

We offer the same name brands as any other furniture store, at a fraction of the price. We pride ourselves in offering "BIG store" furniture at small prices! We encourage all shoppers to give us "The Little Guy" a try before you buy!

The LocalMeA Letter

Sign up for occasional updates and specials

By signing up, you agree to our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.