From freelancer to managing freelance teams
I began my career as an independent freelance photographer in 2003 with one camera, one lens, zero clients, no website, no online presence of any kind and no clear idea of what kind of photography I wanted to do.
I ended 2022 leading a team of talented, professional photographers as the host photographer covering COP15, the 2022 United Nations Biodiversity Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity, the world’s largest conference on biodiversity in history that culminated with an historic agreement to halt biodiversity loss by 2030.
In between then and now, I learned a few things. Here are the top three that I think had the most profound impact on my success and which stand as the core foundation for my business today.
1. Commitment to quality matters.
2. Attitude often differentiates winners from losers.
3. A team diverse in skills and perspective creates max value for clients.
Creative teamwork makes the individual contribution of each creator better and when done in the service of client mandates, the end result richer and much more powerful and relevant than anything a lone contributor could deliver.
We are better together
In addition to the resiliency a team provides, having other creative professionals to work with creates opportunities for collaboration and constructive feedback that foments better work. Many photographers and videographers are used to working alone and wearing many hats (shooter/filmer, editor, account manager, marketer). Having other freelancers with compatible skill sets yields consistently better results – and often helps one return to one’s own work with renewed passion.
Teams can teach each individual member tips and tricks that improves the overall result to the benefit of the client, and also the individual contributor.
And working with other people doing the same kind of work as you but having a completely different perspective, set of experiences and gear is fun and rewarding in its own right.
In 2023 I will be looking to grow my team of freelance videographers, video editors and young new event photographers. Feel free to connect with me if that sounds like you.