By Paul Shephard
‘Would I Make a good freelance lawyer?’ This is a question that is frequently asked by many lawyers that approach me, particularly if they are coming from a permanent role. In a nutshell, there is no definitive answer to this question, it will all depend on what you are looking for.
What’s Your ‘Why’ to be a Freelance Lawyer?
First and foremost, let’s consider the reasons that people go down the freelancing route rather than working within a permanent role. The most common (although, by no means exhaustive) reasons that people join Vario are:
- running another business as well as working within law
- work/life balance
- variety of work
- enjoying working in new environments
Here’s what one of our current Varios thinks about freelancing and his motivations:
“I’ve stayed with freelancing in the early days as it meant I could be with my kids on my terms (I worked mainly from home in Europe); and now that the little darlings have fled the nest, I stay doing it as I’ve come to realise that the real joy is meeting new people to work with, seeing new offices and ways of working and, above all in my sector, getting to see new product ideas being built and marketed. It’s not for everyone, but freelancing and home-working definitely dovetails with my rural life.”
Why not take our Possibilities Poll to see if becoming a Vario is compatible with your lifestyle and motivations?
Strength of Character
However, even if you’re looking for one of these things, what are the characteristics that make a good freelancer? Whilst this answer will vary, we believe the following are essential for getting the most out of embracing the freelance lifestyle:
- Flexibility: Naturally this will come with the territory, as you will be undertaking work for a variety of different clients and being exposed to a number of environments over the course of time. Flexibility can also be a reference to work locations, as freelancers traditionally work in a number of different locations. This, of course, can always be tailored to your commitments and lifestyle.
- Resilience: Working in new environments with new clients can also require one to be resilient. Some people can find meeting new people on a constant basis rather daunting, particularly if they are also finding their way around new law and new infrastructures at the same time.
- Relaxed: Part and parcel of having to work within a high-pressured environment. Quite often, lawyers are requested on an interim basis because of an unexpected need, whether that’s a surge in business or an unexpected leaver.
Let’s Get Personal
In order to begin to start looking at these traits, our Varios are all required to undertake a ‘personality test’ as part of on-boarding into our Hub of freelance lawyers. This test will go through multiple choice questions and ultimately provide us with an overview of your personality insofar as it is possible to do so. There are no right or wrong answers to this ‘assessment’, it merely forms a basis for us to delve deeper into your personality traits and assists us with making sure we find the right assignments for you. This is fairly unique to Vario, and emphasises our commitment to ensuring that we find the right places for you to freelance.
Does it sound like I’m describing you? Are seeking a more flexible career within law? If so, speak to us at Vario and you could be joining our hub of other freelance legal professionals.