A freelance guide to Christmas

Have yourself a merry little Christmas with our guide to dealing with the festive season as a freelancer – from parties to client management.

Freelancing can be a lonely gig, and never is that more apparent than during the festive season.

Social media becomes full of colleagues taking part in Christmas Jumper Day and enjoying the odd tipple or two at the Christmas party, leaving freelancers feeling decidedly left out.

Here are our tips on how to enjoy the quiet Christmas period and ensuing festivities as a freelancer.

Be clear about when you’re available for work

Ensure everyone’s on the same page and your clients know when you will and won’t be working over the Christmas period.

You can block out days as ‘holiday’ in your FreelanceDiary calendar, but it’s also worth a quick email to check-in and make sure there is no outstanding work that your client expected you to complete by the end of the year.

Enjoy a party with fellow freelancers

If you don’t fancy a one-man party with just the dog for company, join forces with other freelancers to celebrate Christmas together.

There are plenty of existing freelance Christmas parties to choose from, such as London’s #FreelanceOfficeParty, which has an impressive guest list, so could be a potential networking opportunity as well.

If you can’t find a party locally, why not organise one yourself. Reach out to freelancers you know or put out a call for other freelancers on social media, using hashtags such as #freelance, #freelancer or #freelancelife.

Make your own fun

So you might not have an office full of people looking as silly as you, but don’t let Christmas Jumper Day (15 December) pass you by. After all, it’s for a good cause.

Don your best festive outfit and share it proudly on social media using the hashtag #ChristmasJumperDay and donate to Save the Children.

You’ll still get that warm, fuzzy feeling from doing a good deed, and you won’t have to go out in public looking like an elf.

Send gifts to clients

In the spirit of Christmas giving, take some time to thank particularly good clients. If a client always pays on time, is a pleasure to work for and has helped your career, a small gift will always be appreciated, and keep you on their radar when they’re recruiting for new projects next year.

It doesn’t have to be expensive, remember, it’s the thought that counts. Wine or chocolates always go down well, or a mug with a personalised message makes a thoughtful gift.

Turn your out of office on…

…and enjoy it. Make the most of the long break when no one is doing much work and stay in your pyjamas all day, eating Quality Street and watching The Sound Of Music – totally guilt free.

But, most important of all, have a very Merry Christmas!

Written by Richard Jeffs
Former freelance shooting producer/director and now founder of FreelanceDiary.com. Frustration with the freelancer booking model drove me to find a dynamic, new way to hire, manage and engage.

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