Do freelance translators need to write a business plan?
When most people think about business plans they think about big businesses rather than small one or two person operations. Yet business plans are applicable to any business of any size and can very much help you focus on what you are trying to achieve with your business. The following sections will review the pros and cons of creating a business plan for freelancer translators. Besides, you may find suggestions on our site for the very best translation blogs for you to follow to boost your translation skills and knowledge.
Why freelance translators should write a business plan
Firstly we will look at the arguments in favor of writing a business plan for your translation freelancing business;
- It makes you consider what you do as a business; many freelancers just put their heads down and get on with the work that they find without really considering what they are doing as a business. By writing a business plan they are forced to put their business hat on and start to actually thinking about what they are doing as a business and creating plans to ensure that their business provides them with what they need.
- It provides you with a clear future for your business; by considering what your true business goals are and how you are going to achieve them you can provide your business with a clear structure. It provides you with a clear map of where your business is heading and how you are going to get there.
- It helps you to identify and cope with changes; a well written business plan will help you to identify the potential threats to your business and ensure that you put in place contingency plans and changes to cope with these threats and changes without having to panic.
- It makes you feel more secure with your business; being able to identify clearly where you are going gives you that feeling of security and helps you to feel that your business is working as it should be. In addition, you may learn the easiest languages to learn for English speakers before you embark on learning a new language.
Problems with writing your freelance translator’s business plan
Of course many freelance translators will be saying “do I really need a business plan?” The following are some of the “cons” involved with writing a business plan;
- Procrastination; many freelancers find it hard to actually knuckle down and get the work done and having to write a business plan can be seen as another excuse for doing anything other than the work that is needed.
- Business plans take time to write if you are going to do it well; a business plan needs to be complete if it is going to add value and that means a huge amount of work for freelance translators if you are going to cover every section.
- It is overwhelming; From doing a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis to creating a marketing plan or budgets for using additional contractors the amount of work and the scope of what needs to be done will seem to be impossible for many freelancers. Many freelancers will not know where to start.
- It may not add any value; if you are just going to take every translation job that comes your way from wherever you advertise or your regular clients is it really something that you need to do?
- It can stop you from taking action; once you have a plan you may feel compelled to follow your plan rather than taking other opportunities that present themselves.
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