It seems like SXSW was so long ago, but I’ve only been back a few days. Today’s my first day back into the normal routine and I’m still trying to get caught up. Most of the big stuff has been taken care of as well as lots of little bits. I’ve probably got about 10 or so things left and I’ll be in good shape. So if I’m working with you on something it shouldn’t be long!
Just before SXSW one of my clients offered me a full time job. I used to work with them before and we’ve always had a good relationship. There’s a lot of good reasons to do it and not too many reasons to say no. The only one being I enjoy working from home and having a very flexible schedule. That said, I like the idea of working with people in an office again and having face time with people to bounce ideas off of and work more closely with them. It would probably even be a beneficial move for my long term goal of 100% of my income coming from publishing my own sites. This is someone who can mentor me and if the projects we work on make sense, even be partners in some things. These are nice people and fun projects. At the end of the day I’ll be doing the same work regardless, working on the same projects. The choice comes down to doing it in the office as an employee, doing it in the office as a freelancer or doing it from home as a freelancer.
Here is some of the things I’m thinking about:
Working Face to Face With People
There’s no faster way to get work done or describe a problem than taking 10 minutes to site down with fellow employees and work through something. In addition, there’s a sense of team work and friendly competition that I totally enjoy. Nothing makes me work harder than having someone to show the end product to.
Leaving Work at Work
One of the toughest problems for freelancers is that there is very little disconnect between home and work, especially if you work in a home office. While I don’t mind so much, sometimes I feel I’m always at work. While there will always be times when you have to do something for the day job after hours, usually that’s just emergencies or the rare event where you have a rush deadline on a project.
Taxes & Money
Right now it costs me more to own my own business than I would make working for someone else. It seems like every time I turn around I’m getting dinged for $100 here and $250 there from some government agency. Not to mention I’m not exactly tax savvy and don’t really have time to learn all the things I need to know to make my money work harder for me. Again, that’s something the owner of the company I’d be working for can mentor me about. Not only does he have a long history in the tech sector making it pretty easy to communicate technical issues with him, but he’s also an MBA, and as much as I joke that means I’ll have to teach him everything, he’s really quite brilliant.
Being Around Other People
Being around people brings out creativity in me and probably in most people. Sometimes just joking around will spark an idea for something. I also like keeping my ability to hold an intelligent conversation sharp as I hope to not only attend more conferences and meet more people, but eventually speak at some of these events. I have 13 years experience in this field and I hope that along the way I might have learned something worth sharing.
Naturally, there’s some apprehension about doing this and I’m still giving it some serious deliberation. I don’t have to decide right away, but I’m hoping to make the decision by this weekend and at the moment, I’m leaning towards going back to work in the office. I’m even kind of excited about the idea.
Anyone have any experience or thoughts on going back to work after freelancing? I would love to year other people’s experiences.