Sam Steve is the founder and Chief editor of Smart Entrepreneur Blog. A serial entrepreneur in the tranches who had failed, failed, failed, and succeeded on his quest to build a thriving online business.
Vince: Where are you from?
Sam: I live in Lagos, Nigeria. A bustling city that doesn't sleep.
Vince: So how long have you been freelancing?
Sam: Since April 2017, that's two years and two months. I've been freelancing since April 2017. And it's a full time job for me now. Every day I get up, boot my laptop and get to work right from my home. It's being amazing and rewarding years of my career and now I feel in control.
Vince: Wow, in two years? That's amazing. Which is your favorite place to get freelance jobs?
Sam: One is LinkedIn, another when I need quick bucks is Fiverr. I've also had referrals; plus most of the clients I work with tend to stick for the long haul.
Vince: I love that. I recently started requesting clients for referrals and the results are awesome. Additionally, referrals tend to be easier to deal with.
Sam: Yeah Sure!
Vince: You talked about how amazing and rewarding your freelance business is; do you sometimes feel down, and unproductive?
Sam: Yes, I do feel down and unproductive sometimes. The main cause in my case is if I've left works to linger for long without tackling them.
If I'm away from work for a while, say for 24 hours, a lingering feeling of I'm missing out on things start creeping in. And if I don't do anything about it, I'd feel down.
Vince: I get you loud and clear here. I call it the “fear of the undone” 🙂 So, how do you shake it off?
Sam: To shake off this feeling, I simply have to get back to work, stay on it, and complete it. The feeling of accomplishment is exhilarating. Also, playing SIA's “I'm Unstoppable” on repeat helps knock me into the right frame of mind. The song also lifts my mood to get things done.
Vince: Which motivational speakers do you listen to?
Sam: Gary Vaynerchuk is my number one go to kick in the butt motivational speaker. I also listen to Grant Cardone when I'm slacking off and need to remind myself why I was building my business in the first place.
As a Nigerian, John Obidi of HeadStart Africa and Remi Owadakun are two inspirational leaders I listen to a lot. Their story reminds me that it is possible to build something of significance, make an impact even from a third-world country.
Vince: Wow… looks like we've got much in common than I imagined. Gary Vee always gets me to work and Grant Cardone keeps the dream real.
As we wrap this up, what advice would you give to the new freelancer just starting?
Sam: It's going to get hard. Some days, you will want to give up and go get a 9-5. But, if you stay at it, with time it gets easier.
Focus on building your brand and reputation, position yourself as someone that provides quality service. Invest in your first couple of clients, they are going to be your mouthpiece down the line.
Thank you so much Sam Steve for your time and sharing with me.
TAKEAWAY #1: It's going to get hard, you will want to give up, but time it gets easier.
TAKEAWAY #2: Invest in your first couple of clients, they are going to be your mouthpiece down the line.
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