Sally (This is an alias)
Her identity has been changed to protect her privacy.
Sally lived overseas and worked in a law firm for a while before moving back to Singapore and getting an administrative job at a training organization. As she interacted more with people involved in training, she felt the desire to be involved. At that point in her life, she wanted more from her career. She wanted to work in an area that she was passionate about, and do something more purposeful. Taking the courage, she dived into freelance training, offering training in communication and team building.
It was difficult to find work initially. It took Sally 1.5 years of mainly pro-bono work and investing in herself before her freelance career began to take off. Although money was an important factor, she would not take up a job if the mission of the company or the intent of the training did not feel right, regardless of the pay. Her family also supported her career choice as the flexibility of freelance work allowed her to spend more time with her family and her young child.
As Sally found her footing as a freelance trainer, she looked to other speakers, trainers and facilitators who inspired her, most of whom are Americans. She attended sessions by these speakers and observed them either in person or via video clips of them on YouTube. In addition, she found that platforms such as the Adult Education Network (AEN) are very useful for freelance AEs. As Sally built her repertoire of services, she gained certification in various tools such as Dr Edward de Bono’s six thinking hats. These gave her qualifications that clients can trust and also improved her personal brand.
Over the years, Sally established strong relationships with her core clientele. Reputation and word of mouth have been the most important assets for her as a freelance trainer. Having a network is also critical to her, as it helps in shaping her image and reputation, as well as provides her with work opportunities. To this day, she believes in being selective in choosing the people she works with and finding like-minded people whom she could trust.