T: What are you currently working on?
R: Currently, I have several projects in the pipeline: multilingual website with an online store for Hungarian fashion designer, another online store also for the designer - it's about wall vinyl and interior stuff. Also preparing one big lifestyle web portal, exciting new project. In the meantime, I work on usual monthly social media community management for my permanent clients.
T: What are you passionate about outside of work?
R: I am passionate about hiking with friends or just taking a walk in the woods just to clear my mind and adjust my focus. I love to collect the books and when detoxicating from digital space I read. I am a succulent and cactus lover. If I had to identify myself with a plant, it would be a cactus. Stable and durable in all circumstances, prickly and taunting if you go too far, but gooey on the inside. If you want me to blossom, treat me carefully and with care.
T: Anything else you'd like readers to know?
I run exclusively on caffeine and sarcasm sprinkled with good intentions. It’s nice to meet you!
T: What drove you to freelancing?
R: I simply didn't have any other option. I lost my job and after 20 years of experience in retail, I was done with it. While working in purchase and sale I was always flirting with digital marketing because that was something I wanted to do. So I did...At first, I couldn't find the job and to start freelancing was the only option.
T: What was your biggest obstacle when you were starting out?
R: In self-employment I see two challenges - find a client or engagement and define the price for your work. At first, I was struggling to find clients. But not any client...but those who understand that the digital era began a long time ago and that they need to digitalise. In Croatia, that's the biggest challenge. The beginning was really difficult, especially for me because I didn't have enough references in the digital sphere. I've made a few websites for free and I volunteer on several projects to show my skills and how I work.
T: What is for you the main advantage of Freelancing?
R: For me work is work and I am a hard worker. The good thing in freelancing is that I get to choose when to work, what to do and with whom. Another thing I love about my job is work location - wherever theres a strong wifi could be a great place to work!
T: How about main disadvantage?
R: Sometimes it's hard because you are on your own. That means you have to be all that: seller, great communicator and feedback provider, administrator, finance expert and of course an expert in what you do so you can finish the job you took in the first place.
T: What is your approach to finding clients?
R: First 6 months I worked for free just to gain references. And then my first clients started to recommend me to their friends and business partners. Now clients find me themselves. The rest is history...
T: What is your advice on calculating rates and determining worth?
R: This is the part I'm not good at...yet. So maybe it's better that I keep my mouth shut and learn from more experienced freelancers.
T: As a freelancer, do you feel you sometimes need to compromise to keep the client? Did you ever find yourself in that type of situation?
R: In my first two years, all I did was compromise. At the moment I don't see any other way to keep the client and I'm ok with that.
T: What’s your no.1 tool you rely on as a freelancer?
R: I think it's important to always have a guy who knows a guy... In my case, there is always something that I don't know and can't finish the project without a little help from a friend. Few good reliable coworkers to jump in when things get messy.
T: Based on your experience - if you could go back, what would you do differently?
R: Nothing. Everything is the way it supposed to be and just at the right time.
T: What would be your message to someone thinking about pursuing freelance career?
R: You don't always need a plan. Sometimes you just need balls!
T: Great, all done. Anything to add?
R: Be sure that you love what you do and have patience because it's not going to be easy. You will have to work much harder than "9-5 office" job. Good luck!