In today’s entry we’re going to discuss the perks and downsides that come with working in either a design agency or as a freelance artist. It essentially boils down to what’s best suited for you, the individual graphic designer, therefore some of the following arguments may not apply, but know that they come from real experience so have a look:
The PROs and CONs of working as a freelancer
PROs: Obviously, the coolest thing about being a freelancer is that you’re working for yourself, you decide what projects you want to approach and how much time you designate to them. It allows you to operate from an environment of your choosing and this can help increase your focus and productivity. You also get more control in terms of which way the project should move creatively. Being your own boss can be great if you have some basic organizational skills and design a schedule that harmoniously incorporates both off-work and job hours.
CONs: In today’s ever growing and competitive market, freelancers have it rougher than agencies as clients tend to rely more on the latter. To remain in the race, you’d sometimes have to work a huge number of hours or else you’d have a hard time keeping up. You would miss and have to make up for all the advantages that come with working at an agency, so no more incentives or team members and staff to aid in projects. You’d have to wear several different hats for this setup to work. Don’t forget to consider that you need professional equipment if you are to keep with the design world, so there’s also an extra cost. What’s probably most prevalent when working from home: anything can be a distraction!
The PROs and CONs of working for an agency
PROs: What most professional agencies have in common is that they have a high performance system for their business and everything is well-organized and in its place. You always know how much money you’re making which allows for better personal planning, you deal with fewer distractions and have a fixed schedule so your work becomes the main focus. Then there’s working in a team, which can prove a very rewarding and growing experience, provided you’re a team player and like to learn from others. Design agencies have the resources and infrastructure to bring out the best you.
CONs: All the coziness of working out of an agency comes with a price. It can be difficult if you have a long commute to work and when you finally arrive you have to deal with condescending authority figures; some days can get rough and the faint of heart are liable to have a nervous breakdown. Then there’s the overall office lifestyle: having very little time for yourself, having to sit on a chair for an ungodly number of hours, limited breaks and lack of sunshine. Having to follow specific assignments, you don’t get work projects of your liking and to some this can prove devastating.
All in all, it’s down to the old different strokes for different folks saying: find what’s best suited for YOU and run with it!