Want no-BS insights on building a highly profitable freelancing business?
✓ FREE 5 Day Course on Winning Top Paying Clients
✓ Q&A - Send In Your Questions, I Answer Them Here
✓ LIVE Webinars
✓ The Chance to Win a FREE Coaching Call
I guarantee 100% privacy. Your information will not be shared
I recently interviewed Pete Savage, one of the authors of The Wealthy Freelancer (both the book and the blog) and co-organizer of International Freelancers Day (September 24, 2010).
For the first time ever, an entire day will be devoted to celebrate freelancers — those courageous souls who are taking our lives in our own hands and creating our own economies. Whether you’re already freelancing, or still dreaming of doing so, this day is for you!
Watch the video and read the interview below to find out more about the Day.
1. What is International Freelancers Day and why did you guys at The Wealthy Freelancer organize it?
International Freelancers Day is a day to celebrate independent workers and the tremendous impact they have on the economy, in the US, Canada and around the world.
We looked around and noticed that freelancers were not celebrated on a international scale like this, and so we shared this idea with our colleagues in the world of freelancing, marketing and social media (many of whom you’ll see on the speakers page) and just about everyone we talked too said, “Great idea!” so we knew we had to to it. It’s been a lot of work, but its been tremendous fun and the event itself is going to be amazing.
2. Why did you choose September 24/25 to be International Freelancers Day? (Which day IS IFD anyway?)
This goes back to much earlier in 2010 when we first were batting around this idea. In fact, the date sort of chose itself.
When we first started batting around the idea, we wanted to have a massive online event the like of which had never been done before in the freelance/solopreneur worlds. And we knew that it would take months of preparation in terms of lining up speakers, and exploring and organizing the technologies required for an online video event like this.
We also wanted the event to be held during a time when most people are likely to be home, and September is a time of year when most people get back to school/back to work/back to normal after the summer.
We settled on September 24, a Friday, because we knew that Friday seems to be a day when people like to watch videos, so Friday seemed to be the most logical day.
And we decided to expand the event to two days, in fact, because we had no choice! We had so many speakers saying, “Yes!” when we approached them with the invitation to present. So September 24 is the actual International Freelancers Day, but the celebration spans two consecutive days. There’s an incredible amount of content packed in there!
3. How did you decide on the session topics and speakers?
In fact, we focused exclusively on approaching quality speakers, and we pretty much let each of them them choose their own presentation topic. We picked speakers based on the value of the content that they provide, in the areas of marketing, social media, productivity.
Whether or not they typically deliver exclusively to freelancers or solo professionals was not a big factor; we were more so interested in, “Is his or her content excellent?” And we knew that the speakers we were approaching were reputable, so we weren’t worried about someone coming back with a topic that was not relevant, or that lacked relevance or value.
As it turned out, the session topics are awesome, and quite varied. I wish I could say it was all part of a brilliant plan… but the sessions all just fell into place. 🙂
4. What do you think is the biggest challenge facing freelancers today, and what is the biggest opportunity we should make the most of?
I personally think the biggest challenge is the same as it has always been: the fact that becoming or being a freelancer is not typically the way in which many (most) of us were brought up.
Most people were raised with a specific idea of what career and work should look like and to “go out on your own” is still largely viewed as being a rebel/derelict/outcast/insane person.
So it can be intimidating to get started on one’s own, or to keep going if the going gets tough. 🙂
But having said all that, the general view of freelancing as a fringe activity is rapidly dissolving. Millions of people are enter the word of freelancing/solopreneurship, so this challenge will become less of an issue as time goes by.
The biggest opportunity is the other side of this same coin… the fact that organizations, not just individuals are rapidly supporting the freelancer/project-based model in order to get work done.
It sounds cliche, but now really is the best time in history to become a freelancer because there’s such increasing acceptance and familiarity with the idea among companies who dish out the work.
5. This is only the first celebration of IFD, right? What are your plans for IFD 2011? (If you have them already)
Yes, this is the inaugural year. We honestly haven’t planned much for IFD 2011 yet… too buried in the details of this first event! But I know we’ll learn a lot from this year’s event, and hopefully we’ll set a great precedence, and one can live up to again next year.
Thank you very much for your time, Pete!
Make sure to click here to register (if you haven’t done so yet) and get FREE access to two days of valuable content exclusively for freelancers.
PS: Pete and the other organizers of International Freelancers Day are running a contest. I’m not normally interested in contests, but the books in the prize package had me drooling. Click here to find out how you can win.