The very best advice I’ve ever had as a freelancer is a very simple one: Under Promise, and Over Deliver.

An editor of mine gave me this advice a few years into freelancing, and it really stuck with me. Not least because I see a lot of freelancers get into pickles because they’ve done the opposite – overpromise and underdeliver.

The trouble is that if you overpromise, you’re on a road to burnout, and you’ve left yourself with no wiggle room to wow your client. But if you under promise and over deliver (especially with deadlines!) you’re giving yourself room to go above and beyond their expectations.

In this week’s podcast, I dive into this topic a little more!”

Listen to the podcast episode below, watch it on Youtube, or scroll down for the summary!

The best freelance advice

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Prefer to read it? Here are the main points! 

The Best Freelancing Advice: Under Promise, and Over Deliver

As a freelancer, receiving valuable advice can make a significant impact on your career. In this episode of The Freelancers Tea Break, Emma Cossey, a seasoned freelancer and coach, shares the best piece of advice she received early on in her career: “under promise, and over deliver.” This simple yet powerful concept has the potential to enhance client satisfaction, build strong relationships, and set you apart from the competition.

1. Over Promising vs. Under Promising: I highlight the common mistake of over promising and under delivering. By setting unrealistic expectations, freelancers risk burning out and failing to impress clients. Instead, I advocate for the opposite approach: under promising and over delivering.

2. The Power of Under Promising: Under promising allows you to deliver exactly what the client expects, ensuring that you meet their baseline requirements. This approach also creates room for you to go above and beyond, exceeding their expectations and leaving a lasting impression.

3. Going the Extra Mile: I emphasise the importance of finding opportunities to wow clients. This can be achieved by finishing projects ahead of schedule, suggesting additional tasks or improvements, connecting clients with relevant contacts, or providing unexpected value. By under promising, you create the time and flexibility to go that extra mile.

Implementing the “under promise, and over deliver” approach can transform your freelancing career. When pitching for projects, always consider how you can set realistic expectations and leave room for exceeding them. By consistently wowing clients, you increase the likelihood of receiving recommendations and building a strong reputation.

Remember, by under promising and over delivering, you can elevate your freelancing business and create lasting success.

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