Understanding The Difference Between Hard and Soft Freelancing Skills

Freelancing is a tough kind of job and is definitely not for everyone. But as they say, you can never learn how to swim if you didn’t touch the waters. I absolutely agree with this. Freelancing might be a hard catch but it is sure easy to learn especially if your interest is focused on it. While skills can be learned, your interest and determination are a pre-requisite so you can proceed with your freelancing progress. In fact, understanding the difference between hard skills and soft skills is one key point to become an effective freelancer.

Are you a freelancer? Whether you are a beginner or a struggling person who cannot decide if you would want to become a freelancer or not, here’s an ample enlightenment that I can relay to you so you can at least have a vivid overview about important freelancing skills.

What are these important Freelancing Skills?

There are two skills separately identified for a clearer presentation and understanding about Freelancing. The Hard Skills and The Soft Skills. Just continue reading so you can fully figure freelancing.


This kind of skill is teachable and usually the focus of a freelancing wannabe. This is his choice of skills or his niche. Therefore, it can be identified based on what really is the WANT of a certain freelancer. Hard skills are developed and learned in-depth through training and skills technicalities.

A few examples of hard skills:

  • Programming/Coding just like what Web Developers do
  • Social Media Management
  • Digital Marketing
  • Graphics Designing
  • Video or Photo Editing
  • Article Writing or Copywriting
  • Ability to build a WordPress website
  • Web Designing
  • Knowledge of WordPress and Yoast Plugin
  • SEO
  • Content Creation

These kinds of skills focus more on the personality traits that can aid a person in a particular job. While a good working attitude summarizes them all, it is important to at least make a self-check before diving into the waters of freelancing. In other words, the competition is global and there are thousands and thousands of freelancers that can just take your place if you fail to do the self-checking.

The following are just a few of soft skills which I can share:

  • Critical and Analytical Thinking
  • Good Interpersonal Relationship Builder
  • Focus

We all know that in all and in every circumstance, attitude matters. A good set of personality traits is a good start for you as a freelancer, granting and making reactions especially towards your tasks make your attitude to come out and find yourself have a character representation to your audience or your clients.

There are must-have Soft Skills that are effective for aspiring freelancers and practicing freelancers. Here are a few that I can share with you.

1) Self-Confidence

Everything starts with ourselves. So as a freelancer you have to be confident of your skills, abilities, and the things you are capable of. You must also be decisive of the niche or niches you wanted to focus on. Freelancers might be sometimes called jack-of-all-trades, but it is very important to be of expertise of something which can make you more confident in dealing with your clients.

2) Sales and negotiating skills

Negotiation skills are qualities that allow two or more parties to reach a compromise. These are often soft skills and include abilities such as communication, persuasion, planning, strategizing, and cooperating. This ability makes you more dependable especially if you have already memorized and become in-depth knowledgeable of communicating your products and/or services really well.

There are a lot of who are looking for this kind of skill in a freelancer.

3) Time Management

I mentioned above that freelancers are sometimes or shall I say often called the jacks-of-all-trades, which means Time Management is very important. Organization, prioritization, goal setting, delegation, and planning are the core ingredients of Time Management recipe. As a freelancer, you should possess these qualities, or else you will get all your tasks done in a topsy turvy. Which is not impressive and there is a big possibility your client won’t last working with you. You might mix the tasks unawarely or worst, if you are a freelancer having multiple clients, you will mix the results. Oh God Forbids!

4) Business Management skills

Freelancers often are required to beat the deadlines and make no excuses unless necessary which can only be applied for emergencies. Management skills are very important since freelancing also makes you your own kind of boss. This is the kind of skills which is a combination of technical, conceptual, interpersonal and communication, decision-making skills. Thus, this would require you to be someone who is good at encouraging good relationships and team dynamics.

5) Passion

Passion is enough most of the time to get you interested in something. Say, for example, you are interested in Web Designing. You will accomplish the tasks accordingly because your willingness to learn is there.

6) Patience

Learning how to wait, not giving-up, and willingness to halt something worth the wait is a kind of patience needed from you as a freelancer. Before jumping into doing freelancing tasks, you must first decide your niche, learn the skills, and keep looking for clients. That is the process. No freelancer is impatient.

Can Freelancers Improve their Hard and Soft Skills?

As a freelancer, you can. While soft skills are innate and can only be developed by you, the hard skills are being learned with the help of coaching and learning from class.

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