Freelancer, Entrepreneur, Independent Contractor, Consultant - wtf am I??
Entrepreneurs have automation, frameworks and representatives that work in their organizations. Freelancers exchange time for money and the biggest difference between the two is time.
The contrast between being a Consultant and Freelancer?
As a consultant, you are part of a long term ongoing agreement. Consultants can work on-site for the client, and sometimes are called an Independent Contractor. In addition, if the consultants use the client’s tools, and end up completing more assignments in addition to the main task, there’s a shot you might be considered an employee.
We will talk about who is considered an employee vs freelancer per the IRS. They are the only one that determine the difference. You will often come across clients that do not know how they can and cannot treat you - so you need to be prepared to have a conversation with them and inform them of the laws.
As a freelancer, your services have a start and end date with agreed upon deliverables. You client provides you with the information you need for the project and it is your responsibility to independently complete the work. You control how the job gets completed (as long as it’s done when within the time frame you and the client agree on). Once the project is finished, your relationship with the client ends until they reach out to you for another project.
Let's go old-school - Merriam-Webster Dictionary: a freelancer is “a person who works independently, selling work or services by the hour, day, or job, with no intent to pursue a permanent or long-term commitment to any single employer.”
Freelancers get paid when they are actively working. If you are not working with a client, you are not getting paid. (Unless you have a full-time/part-time job, another side-gig, etc.)
Freelancing is an essential step in the entrepreneur’s journey. You have to learn how to find clients, talk to them and get them to pay you. You have to learn how to develop skills and ideas and test them in the marketplace. And freelancing is great, because for all intents and purposes, you can get started immediately.
Consultants give professional or expert advice, generally to executives about their companies so they select the best way to proceed forward. A consultant may come in and render a professional opinion on several different aspects of the company. When I conduct audits for my client, I am providing an Independent Audit Review of the companies ADA website accessibility - as one example.
Consultants may also have some W2s & 1099s to show for their work at the end of the year.
Ask yourself: “Is the business sustainable and able to survive if you no longer actively engage or work with the business?”
If the answer is “Yes”, you are an entrepreneur.
Real life example: I had serious health issues last year and my business stopped operating. I was not an entrepreneur.
Now, you are not stuck with one title. Depending on what you do - you could be all of these! At this time I am a Freelancer for one of my businesses and half way to being considered an Entrepreneur will another.
Comment below and tell me what you are and/or what your striving to be! I love hearing your stories!