“Build a Specific Job Oriented Team…”

HBG – Entrepreneurs Presents Freelancers Virtual Summit
Interview # 18 – Guest Umar Draz
Host: Muhammad Yousaf
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Introduction: Full-stack developer. Runs IT Company. Have done freelancing for 1 Year initially – then started my own company. Also, ran a hosting company back then in 2011. 4 Plugins built on WordPress. Been in the field for 9 Years.

How Newbies Should Start: I started this field as a Hobby. I have no one to follow, with no guidance at all. Using my own imagination, I worked 16-18 hours daily online. Trust yourself and don’t say this field is not for me. You never know what’s in there for you.

Self-Learning Process: First thing, you should have an interest. I started as a Hobby. During my graduation, I bought a domain – learned how to create a website, studied full guide. My interest grew with time to know more about the website building process. Started HTML coding initially.

Full Stack Developer: Started learning PHP after the success of my HTML site. Start gathering various learnings such as WordPress, themes. And built a WordPress custom theme. After 3 months I got my first client for a static site. That client worked with me for a couple of other projects.

Local Clients / Offline Experience: It’s a good experience with local clients. And I find it the way to give back to the community. I did not feel confident while interacting with local clients but it boosted my confidence and strength with time.

Client Selection Process: Amount is never my priority. I put myself in the client’s shoes to know his requirement. Don’t make price, the barrier between the client and you in the first meeting. Raise client expectations. I don’t fake it. I try to understand the project requirement, make the budget for it. I use to earn clients instead of money.

Handling Clients: Some of my clients were like parasites – they use to consume a lot of my time & energy. But after 2015 I made a strong filter & take selected projects. I use to prefer to communicate over voice, to build trust, the know-how of the project. I explain the project delivery process in detail such as how I will execute the project, revisions, and other aspects – this builds confidence & Trust factor. For WordPress related projects, I also give a clear picture of the project – & tell my client that these features are specific & for this project only.

Team Building: All of my team members are specific job oriented such as WordPress front end, back end developer, designer. In my view, team management is a tough job. I was weak in this area initially, and use to judge the person with good English communication should also have known coding better.

Task Assigning: I break down Work structure, also explain the process to the client and then assign different works to workers

Revenue Earned: Accumulative earning more than $100,000 in the last 9 Years. Taking Clients Strategy: My website ITPixel.com  used to rank in Google back then in 2011, and fairly a large number of visitors come to my site and see my Video on Website Building. From there, I got most of my customers directly.

Retaining Clients: I retain most of my clients. After the completion of the 1st project with clients – we use to move forward with the 2nd phase of the project. In these ways, I manage to extend our mutual work relationship, excellent work is done along the way that builds

Why Freelancers don’t work on their own product: I have developed a few products such as WordPress Sites & plugins and banking products. I now work a few hours on Project that generates my monthly income but my main interest now is in consultancy and business development.

Banking Products Working: We are working to build banking products for Visual blind people so that they can use the ATM interface and online transactions. Plugins on WordPress.org: As a volunteer to the community I have few plugins, one with active 1000+ installation downloads

The difference I See: My eyes are more open now. See things as Zoom in. In the past, I see myself as blind who can differentiate between success & failures. In the past, I don’t have an example of a person  5 Years experience is at what level. With just 6 months of experience, I was very confident at that and feel myself a very experienced person. I started book learnings from 2015 regularly, and they were an eye-opener for me & it helped me a lot in growth and vision & to help achieve specific goals.

Advice for Newbies & Pros: Should have passion & interest in whatever field you are in and should be 100% in. For pros, I would suggest communicating with clients reading his inner thoughts and reading his mind and work requirements.

 

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Connect with Guest:
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FB Profile: https://www.facebook.com/umardrazpk

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Connect with Us:
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Muhammad Yousaf Saeed
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