You’re Not Freelancing, You’re Running a Business

I had a friend recently congratulate me on the success on my freelancing business. Initially, I was very appreciative. Business has been increasing this year, thank you for noticing. However, after thinking about it for awhile I realized: I hate the word freelance. defines freelance as “working for different companies at different times rather than being permanently employed by one company.” In other words: a worker that can’t commit. At least that is what I hear.

The reality is that I am not freelancing, I’m running a business. I am no different than any other business out there. I work for different companies at different times as do all businesses. Differentiated market segments are no different than multiple businesses. The size of a business and whether it is on the Fortune 500 list of businesses doesn’t matter either. It has no reflection upon your label as a freelancer or a business owner.

The truth is that I am permanently employed by one company: Chris Martin Studios Inc. My own. I started it, registered to become a for-profit corporation in Washington state, filed the necessary paperwork with the IRS to be an S-Corporation.

So, for all of the designers, developers, artists, and entrepreneurs out there being okay with the “freelance” label: Own the label of “business owner.” You might just thank me, and you might not be expected to work for free. Because after all, free is the beginning of freelance.

2 replies on “You’re Not Freelancing, You’re Running a Business”

Thanks for posting this. I have been an “independent professional” for the better part of 15 years and find it so off-putting when someone asks how my freelancing is going….as though I am right out of school going from project to project. I enjoyed your article….!

Thanks for commenting and keep up the great work running your business. 15 years is a beacon for the rest of us.

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