Busy work will be the death of you if you aren’t careful.
I’m here to tell you that every time I have cleared away the “chaff” – the clients that took up a lot of my time without a fair amount of financial compensation – I have benefited in the long run.
Now what does that mean for you? I can’t tell you exactly, but I can share some examples from my own writing career…
One client I had provided work only periodically. The pay was pretty good, but the amount of hoops I had to jump through weren’t equal to the amount I was getting for the work. In addition, whenever they contacted me, they needed something right away. This meant I had to build a little space into my schedule. Space that eventually was freed up for other clients when I finally decided to “fire” myself from the gig.
Another client I had gave steady work for average pay, but the turnaround and amount of hours involved left me with little time for other work. As most writers are already aware, steady work in this field is really hard to come by. It took me a long time to get up the guts to fire myself from this job, but once I did there were many other opportunities that I had come my way and I wound up making more money in less time than I did with this client.
So what’s my point?
Every once in a while it is a good idea to evaluate your client base from a time/money/hassle point of view. Do all the pieces fit together nicely – or are there some things that stand out as a problem for you? Letting go of the busy work can be a great thing if you prune carefully.
Now I’m not telling you to go cutting clients indiscriminately. You need a base to go from that will pay your bills and provide you with some security. But when you have that, be sure you don’t get complacent and just go with the flow if it isn’t working well for you. Sometimes re-adjusting your work flow can offer the unexpected, and often that may mean more money in the long run.
It works for me.