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Freelance Advice: Timelines and Project Management

Freelance tips on developing a project production schedule and handling multiple deadlines and overlapping projects.

Advice, All Posts, Life as a Freelance Designer

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April 9, 2013

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  1. BrigettE says:

    Great post Ciera! These are all challenges that took a while for me to get a handle on, especially since I do freelance work outside of a full-time job. I’m certainly still striving to improve, your points are good to keep in mind!

    A big thing that’s helped me is setting up a long-term schedule with clients that I work with consistently. When we can rough out a plan for all of the projects for the season/year, I can anticipate what my busy times will be and be able to plan accordingly.

  2. Danny says:

    That was a tidy little article. I’m glad I stayed on to read it, I picked up some useful advice and some more again from the link. Thanks for the productivity sheet. I want to quit my bad job and earn from creating! Thanks again, Danny

  3. alicia says:

    This post is great! I feel like I’ve gotten prettty good with time management and handling deadlines. So thankful for that! I can’t emphasize the rush fee enough. Some clients are just bad for always giving you projects that are due YESTERDAY. They need to learn that it’s not ok to work like that.
    When I first started freelancing I had a lot of time on my hands and was able to turn around work suuuuper fast. By doing things immediately I trained my clients badly. Now if I can’t turn things around with in a matter of 24 hrs or don’t reply to an e-mail immediately they freak out. I’ve had to take a step back and set boundaries.
    Lessons you learn 🙂
    Also from my experience as you as you bring up the words rush fee clients back up and give you a few extra days days without much fuss. Don’t let people take advantage of you!

    • Ciera says:

      yes! sometimes even if I get something done quickly I’ll wait a few hours to send the email. I don’t want them thinking I am THAT fast all the time! 😉

  4. Q: How do you handle multiple deadlines/overlapping projects?

    Most of the time this is my problem. having too much to priority. Thanks for giving advice

  5. Jackie says:

    I’m really impressed by your post, Ciera. A graphic designer needs to have good time management skill in order to ensure the quality of success they can give to their clients. I’ll definitely be sharing this with the users of Webydo, all graphic designers.Thanks!

  6. Aimee says:

    Great tips- pinning this! 🙂 I’m so horrible at organizing a timeline.
    xoxo Aimee

  7. Jules says:

    My biggest problem is organizing my brain. I feel like there’s so much to do and so little time to do it in that it gets overwhelming. And when I feel overwhelmed I don’t feel organized.
    xoxo, Jules of Canines & Couture

  8. This is really helpful. I love your advice on walking away from projects where the timelines seem unrealistic. Many freelancers (new ones especially!) are wary about turning down work – but going with your gut is so important for stress levels!

    • Ciera says:

      Thanks Katie! Yep, you must turn down work that you are not feeling! Otherwise you will start to hate what you do!

  9. Allyssa says:

    Great tips! I always struggle with managing several timelines at once. I like the idea of breaking each project into chunks. I’ll have to give it a try!

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I'm so glad you're here, stick around, there's so much to see, xo Ciera


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