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.
Dictionary.com 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.