One More Freelancer’s Big Ideas from CFC 2013

Deidre RienzoHoly moly. What a trip it’s been! I’m back from my third CFC where 600+ freelancers converged on San Francisco’s Moscone Center. It’s hard to compile a whole event’s inspiration into one blog post—but here are the big ideas that stuck in mind. Also, check out the Marketing Mix for my specific golden nuggets.

The big ideas

  • Just be who you are. I took a lot of the pressure off myself this year. I didn’t need to meet everyone. I didn’t need to get a zillion business cards. I was just me – and it was pretty cool. My takeaway? Be you. Be honest. Say what’s on your mind. If you’re tired, take a break. If you’re compelled to ask a stranger to lunch—do it. Listen to your instincts, take chances, but don’t push yourself to be anyone other than you. Don’t be on, just be you.
  • Get better and better. I’ve done Dyana Valentine’s session, Pitch Perfect, a few times now. And my results keep getting better. If something worked once, it will likely work again, especially if you take a fresh approach.
  • Say “excuse me” and leave. I adore most people. But some just aren’t my cup of tea. If you come into contact with someone you don’t click with, a rude person, or a conversation monopolizer—don’t get stuck. Politely excuse yourself. You don’t have to love everybody.
  • Take time to have a meaningful conversation. I get flustered. I rush around. I get overwhelmed. This time, I tried to focus and have a few meaningful conversations that lasted more than 22 seconds. That was my favorite part.

I’m so grateful to Ilise and HOW for making this conference a reality. I know it gives a lot of us solo-pros a place to fit in, and as someone CFC 2013 Housemateswho has been to a number of other conferences, this is, by far, the friendliest, most welcoming one around.

Register by July 25, 2013 for CFC 2014 (in Boston, May 12-16) and get 20% off the early bird rate!

And if you missed the event but want to experience an abridged “online version” next week — 7/17 through 7/19 — sign up here for HOW Design Live Online.