If your goal is to find a handful of publications or clients to write for on a regular basis, it should be reassuring to know they’re just as eager to find freelancers they can count on.
An editor at Crain’s Workforce Management, where I’ve been a contributor since 2005, says as much in a blog post on the business magazine’s website not long ago.
Companies of all types, including publishers, are using more contingent workers, including temps, independent contractors and freelancers, writes Ed Frauenheim, a Workforce senior editor. Contingent workers help companies keep costs down and let them respond more quickly to shifts in their business than they might be able to by adding permanent staff.
But, he says, if this is the way business is going to work in the future, using contingent workers can’t just be about cutting costs. Companies have to show the love for their contingents — freelancers included — by making them feel like part of the team. He illustrates that point by sharing an example of how I’ve been working with the magazine. Here’s what he says:
One way to fire up nontraditional workers, it seems to me, is to involve them in conversations about strategy or new business opportunities—treat them as partners rather than ‘hired help.’ In recent months, for example, we included one of our top freelance writers, Michelle V. Rafter, in content planning discussions. And I asked her to join me on a panel about social media at our recent HR Tech Week virtual conference.
So while we’re steering clear of a traditional employment relationship with Michelle, we are bringing her closer to us.
I’ve long based my freelance business on being a team player, choosing to work a lot for a handful of publications or online outlets. I consider myself an extended staff member. That means I do things like forward items I think would be of interest to my editors, and share ideas for stories if I think they’d be a good fit, even if I’m not interested in writing them. It’s nice to know that kind of loyalty gets noticed.
Read the entire post on the Work in Progress blog that Frauenheim writes for the magazine: Arms-Length Embrace.
How have you cultivated long-standing relationships with publications you work with?