Boundaries

No matter what you do, work can take over your life – even more so when you’re freelance. We’ve probably all experienced burnout that leaves you performing at less than optimal levels and usually, it could have been avoided. So, boundaries are great because everyone knows where they stand.

I will always aim to go above and beyond for my clients but here’s what I do to help separate work and life:

Communications

I’ll communicate with you about your project via email and/or Trello. If you have complex or ongoing projects then using Trello would make your life easier – say goodbye to those long email threads! Definitely worth signing up for this free project management web app if you haven’t already.

Unless we have an explicit agreement I won’t join your Slack channel. This is because it’s extremely distracting and the project management part of the project goes way up – honestly, clients don’t like the added cost.

I don’t have a phone number available because it’ll always ring as I’m in the zone, breaking the focus on what could be your project. But you can set up a call with me on Calendly or email me to arrange another time. I do old school phone calls, or Zooms if you really want to see my face. I’ll do the same for you and ask when would be a good time to call.

As I’m freelance and can be a night owl, my replies to you may be outside of your working hours but I don’t expect you to respond to me straight away 🙂

I don’t have work email or social media on my phone. I’m not avoiding you, I’m breaking that addiction by removing myself from the “always-on” culture.

If you feel that these comms would ruin your project with me, I’d have to disagree but I understand we all have different ways of working. I have worked almost completely with written asynchronous communications since 2009 and have never had a problem. Believe it or not, I’ve built extremely good business relationships without ever speaking to the client in person.

Projects

Creative work all stems from an idea. And time is great for ideas because they don’t always come when summoned, instead, they prefer 3 am or the shower. Time also allows an idea to be bounced around and built on. But there’s an epidemic of yesterday deadlines in the creative fields which is detrimental and often the logical brains within a project aren’t aware of this aspect that the creative brains deal with.

If you have ideas I absolutely want to hear or see them. Nothing is too silly. They could be written ideas, mood boards, music, sketches – I don’t care how basic these are, it’s great to see what you have in mind so I can make sure I’m on the right track.

Be sure to send briefs and all supporting content I’d need in plenty of time so that your work is not urgent/rushed.

Urgent doesn’t mean important. In 12+ years I have had one legitimately urgent and important project that was related to British Nationals involved in a terror attack. Makes you think, right? Is there a possibility to push back deadlines so that we aren’t chasing our tails from the start have a higher quality outcome? Our stress levels would thank us too.

If you do need something last minute and it’s possible for me to do, you’ll be switched on to rush rates. Don’t worry I’d warn you! To avoid this make sure there’s at least two weeks notice but bear in mind my schedule does change, plus holidays and sickness.

By default, my invoices are set to 15-day payment terms. You’d be notified if this is different for your project. They’re usually done in two halves, before the project starts and once signed off.

Payments are done via bank transfer. If you’d like to use a credit or debit card let me know in advance.

Chasing invoices is no fun, please pay on time and if there are any issues let me know asap.

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