By some estimates, freelancers now make up about a third of the U.S. workforce. It’s easier now than it ever has been to pay the bills as a self-employed worker, thanks to communications technologies that allow us do work wherever we are for whomever is paying.

But that doesn’t mean self-employment is the right path for everyone. As contributing writer Jason McDowell pointed out last month, you can’t succeed as a freelancer unless you have a certain set of skills.

Sometimes, media outlets – our publication included – are too quick to tout the benefits of freelancing without highlighting the challenges. Sure, self-employment can bring you a measure of independence and may even be more lucrative than traditional employment, but when you work for yourself, you have to be more than your own boss – you also have to be your own accountant, your own salesperson, your own customer service rep, and so on.

Some of us – myself included – are better off showing up to someone else’s office (physical or virtual) every day.

Not sure where you land? Check out this new infographic from small-business funding source The Business Backers. If you follow the flowchart, you’ll find out how suited you are to becoming a freelancer.

And remember – this isn’t just a question of skills, but also a question of happiness. You may be the best at what you do, but if you don’t have the right personality to be a freelancer, you’ll be miserable going the self-employment route.


Master the art of closing deals and making placements. Take our Recruiter Certification Program today. We're SHRM certified. Learn at your own pace during this 12-week program. Access over 20 courses. Great for those who want to break into recruiting, or recruiters who want to further their career.
Like this article? We also offer tons of free eBooks on career and recruiting topics - check out Get a Better Job the Right Way and Why It Matters Who Does Your Recruiting.
in Freelance]