In the last post, we had discussed techniques to acquire work, in this post, let us discuss the effective execution of the same.
In the freelancing world, there is a wide variety of work that goes on, right from something as simple as data entry to something as complex as creating an ERP. Each and every one of these jobs or projects has a different set of specifications, come with the varied size of teams and of course each has its different price.
What is it then that underlines customer satisfaction and retention? Let us break them down and analyze what makes a successful delivery story and how a freelancer or a vendor can succeed in wake of extreme competition and price wars.
First let us break down the deliverables into three distinct qualitative parts – activity, results, and value. Let’s discuss them in detail.
The activity deliverable is something that every freelancer with a minimal matching skill-set can execute and deliver. That means if the scope of work defines that, a set of tasks set down as a procedure is to be accomplished, it is quite easy to do so for anyone who is moderately skilled in the field. For example data entry, typing from a jpeg file to an editor, posting on social media, writing a piece of code etc.
This tantamount to clockwork and can be executed again and again. However best you can do this, in your opinion, what are the chances that the client will hire you again. He may or he may not. He may because you got things executed on time. But, if the client finds someone who can do this at a lesser price, don’t you think he will opt for him or her?
Bottom-line, you are not adding result-based value to the work a hand or probably the work itself doesn’t have any. So, it is time to upgrade your skills or look at a different skill-set where you can make a difference.
Every project has a set of deliverables that lead to a result. Though many clients do not define the results as such, if you have a good skill-set and experience in the industry, you may be able to foresee where the project leads to. Better still, it is best to ask the client, believe me; most clients will define the results, only they need to be asked.
If you have the required results in mind, don’t you think you can execute the project in a different manner so that you help the client achieve his objectives, or at least, try and do that? You will be more effective and efficient to the client when you do this.
Are you adding some value to the work that came with a damp-definition from the client just by having a single conversation? Now, what are the chances that the client will come back to you? Certainly more, since that single conversation underlines your commitment to the work at hand and makes the client believe that you want to work “with him” and just “for him”.
Activity is anyway a part and parcel of execution of any project. Result orientation evinces the interest of the client. The value proposition is entirely different. In the execution phase, after conversing with the client and understanding the objectives, if you can, as a provider can add value to the client by understanding the benefits in terms of generating, more leads, sales or goodwill by your work, it converts to value.
For example, if you are writing web content for him, activity-based execution can create any kind of content, even academic or that which provides information. Result based content will be in terms of adding the right “call to actions” at the right places. Value-based execution will involve studying his audience mindsets and creating compelling content that the visitor reads and buys adding to the client’s business.
Don’t you think your client will come back to you? In fact, he will refer other clients to you helping you grow your business like you have done for him. If your client benefits in terms of business by using your services, he will most certainly come back to you time and again.
So, what kind of freelancer do you want to be – activity oriented, result oriented or value oriented? The choice is yours. Of course, you will need to train more at your skills to get to the top. Take relevant advice, get into some training courses, learn from others and focus on results to succeed.