I've always been self-employed; can I get a job?

Even if you can’t remember the last time you got a paycheck from someone else, you are likely to find you are easily employable.Consider the skills you’ve learned by being on your own: Management: Everyone who is self-employed learns to manage pr

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  • Even if you can’t remember the last time you got a paycheck from someone else, you are likely to find you are easily employable.

  • Consider the skills you’ve learned by being on your own:

  • Management

  • Everyone who is self-employed learns to manage projects and those who have employees also learn to manage people.

  • Self-discipline

  • Bosses love self-starters. They love people who show up in the morning and start work without being told what to do. Not everyone knows how to do that, but everyone who’s been working independently has mastered the skill.

  • Hard work

  • Having danced back and forth between self-employment and working for others, it is clear to me that I never work harder than I do when I’m working for myself. Employers simply don’t expect as much as you do when your livelihood hangs in the balance.

  • Results

  • For the self-employed, you can’t make it from one month to the next — forget making it for years — without getting results. In any field, if you’re accustomed to getting results, someone will be eager to hire you.

  • Determination

  • Persistence, doggedness, and a "stick-to-it" attitude, are skills learned through years of going it alone. That attitude is invaluable, and employers will pay up for the privilege of having an employee who can demonstrate the talent.

  • Here are some tips for finding the right job:

  • Update your resume

  • If it has been a long time since you’ve had to update a formal resume, it's a good idea to get help. You probably have talent that you don’t see clearly, and a professional resume coach can help you put it all on paper in a way that will best represent you.

  • Network

  • Your existing professional network is ready to work for you. If you’ve developed relationships over the past decades of being self-employed, those relationships will be ready to serve you. Reach out to your clients and customers, your vendors and advisors, even your peers and competitors. Tell them what you’re doing and most will be excited to help. In fact, many will think you are helping them to solve a problem. Your talents are valuable.

  • Social Network

  • If you’ve been going it alone for the last decade you certainly know all about social networks like, Linkedin and Facebook. Be sure to let people know you are available for a full-time opportunity. You’ll find people ready to help immediately.

  • Finally, a few tips for starting work as an employee (again):

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  • The Boss

  • The hardest part about having a job is answering to a boss. It’s generally not so bad. You were a good boss, right? There are lots of good bosses out there. Good bosses value your experience and wisdom; they won’t ride you like a newbie. Be patient with your boss. If you show her respect, she’ll respect you, too.

  • The Schedule

  • When working on your own time was yours to manage. There are different expectations in an office. Be sure you understand the cultural norms around the work schedule before you find yourself violating them. Some offices that post an 8:30 start time see everyone rolling into the office at 9. Others see everyone there at 8. Get a good read on the situation before you find yourself getting chewed out.

  • Colleagues

  • Now that you have peers and colleagues make it a point to get to know them. Make friends. Offer to help. Show deference and respect. The more you do this the more that will come back to you.

  • Returning to the world of employment after years of self-employment or freelancing can be a difficult transition, but you have a great deal to offer. Your network can help you find a place quickly.

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Devin Thorpe, husband, father, author of Your Mark On The World and a popular guest speaker, is a Forbes Contributor. Building on a twenty-five year career in finance and entrepreneurship that included $500 million in completed transactions, he now champions social good full time, seeking to help others succeed in their efforts to make the world a better place.

Website: http://www.yourmarkontheworld.com

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