Yes, You Can Hone Your Leadership Skills as a Freelancer. Here’s How

Leadership skills are integral to success in every aspect of your life. When you think strategically, inspire people, communicate effectively, and maximise organisation, you can boost your budget and raise your profits. But since qualities like creativity, empathy, time management, and reliability are best trained when you work with a team, freelancers may feel they’re missing out on opportunities to train their leadership skills.

But this isn’t the case at all. Freelancers constantly face the same challenges that build leadership skills in every working setup, whether corporate or solo. If you’re working freelance, you’re directly responsible for strengthening client relationships, thinking innovatively, maximising business opportunities, and overseeing your entire business operations. This means you’re given just as many — if not more — opportunities to hone your leadership capabilities as you would in other environments. If you’re curious about how to seek these opportunities out, read on.

Seek collaboration

Even working freelance gives you plenty of opportunities to work with others. By seeking collaboration with a colleague or choosing to participate in a team, you can exercise interpersonal leadership skills. That’s because working with others means you’ll have to address potentially uncomfortable situations where you can’t always yield. You may encounter interpersonal conflict, creative disagreements, and other complex problems that can challenge and exercise leadership skills like empathy, communication, and problem-solving. Moreover, you have the opportunity to create a vision with a team, find innovative ways to execute it, and foster healthy partnerships as you motivate each other to get the job done. By constantly participating in collaborative efforts, you open yourself up to unique learning opportunities for leadership.

Consider leadership coaching

All professionals seek instruction to hone various skills, whether it be through classes, conferences, or mentorship. When it comes to leadership skills, it’s no different — even if you’re a freelancer who doesn’t always have a team to work with. Seeking leadership coaching fosters development in your attitude and behaviours that take your career and business to the next level. With professional instruction, you can realise your potential, heighten self-awareness, and create lasting change. You learn more about coping mechanisms, self-regulation, and well-being to help you function effectively as you lead your business. You can also learn behaviour shifts that allow you to lead, manage, and think strategically no matter what situation you’re working under. All this comes with professional guidance from experienced coaches who can help you navigate complex working environments to be an effective leader.

Pursue business opportunities

With all the uncertainty surrounding it, being a freelancer isn’t always an easy choice. In fact, surveys show that British freelancers are much less confident in their job security amid the current economy due to the rising cost of living and the government’s policies relating to freelancers. However, this should only motivate you to think innovatively and pursue business opportunities whenever possible to become an effective leader and boost your career. Take on more projects, attend networking events, and enrol in workshops or classes that help you cultivate your skills. Learn more about your industry, emulate the actions and attitudes of successful figures, and understand how to maximise developments in the field. By building yourself up with confidence and self-assurance, you can cultivate leadership skills that boost your reliability, profitability, and reputation. Maximising your opportunities in this way helps you foster strategic problem-solving, time and organisational management, and flexibility.

Leadership skills are highly transferable and vital for career advancement. Pursuing opportunities to exercise these qualities while freelancing can both boost your personal development and help you further your career success.

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