Ivana is digital enthusiast from Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina.
- Hi Ivana, how long have you been working as a freelancer now?
I started freelancing 3 years ago. My business changed over time. At first, I worked as a data entry specialist, website tester, data enrichment and market researcher, home administration specialist. Then I started to learn programming and study for Master’s degree in Information Technologies field and work in another branch.
- What inspired you to become a freelancer? Did you think about it for a long time or did your decision come suddenly?
Decision came suddenly, I read about freelancing on one forum and thought why not to try. I am bachelor of Economics sciences and I started to find jobs in that field. My business changed over time. Before I started, I took 3 months for researching about freelancing, profile building, online business communication, and then great freelance story began.
Working for yourself and from your home has a lot of advantages, but good organization skills are crucial.
- How did you gain your first customers?
My First customer was not good customer, he didn’t pay for my work, but I didn’t give up. First real customer came from Elance freelance platform. My first job was to test one website. Client was satisfied with my work and that was successful beginning.
- Who has been your greatest inspiration?
My greatest inspiration is Nick Vujicic, if he can play football than everything is possible. Also, Jordan Peterson, Simon Sinek, Robin Sharma, Mother Theresa etc. Great people inspire me.
- John Wanamaker said: Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is, I do not know which half. Do you gain your clients by advertising or in another way?
I haven’t used advertising yet, but maybe I will try it in the future. I gain my clients on freelance platforms and through LinkedIn.
- Do you hire outsourcing service providers for services, which you believe are a waste of your time?
I have hired few times providers for services I thought they were a waste of my time.
- How does your typical working day look like? What do you do when you are not working? How many hours/days per week are you working? What do you do in your free time?
My day varies and every week is different. I also work in another company as a website manager so I freelance part-time. When I am not working I play tambura (national instrument in my country) and guitar. As a part of the orchestra I participate in local and international competitions and festivals of folklore and traditional music around the Europe, where I present tradition of my country, and meet different cultures. That helps me to get cross-cultural communication skills. Also, I love sport, and I enjoy in different spot recreations.
- What would you do differently if you would start again?
I would start earlier.
- What was the best business advice you received? Do you have any advice for other freelancers?
Dream big. Start small. Begin now.
- Entrepreneurs have many things in common. They read a lot. What about you? What are your favorite books?
Yes, I read, but I would like to read more. I like to read Dostoyevsky. I don’t have one favorite book, is hard to choose. Also, I read about new technologies, economics books, motivation books, different kind of books, blogs, articles, newspapers and other sources of quality information.
- Top 3 mobile apps on your smartphone?
- Google maps
- Top 3 websites?
- Your last vacation?
My last vacation was on Bol, Brac Island, Croatia. Gorgeous place for summer vocation. Beautiful beach Zlatni Rat (Golden Horn) every few years look different, the exact shape and length of the landform varies with regard to changes in tide, current, and wind. And the island’s tallest peak, Vidova gora, or Mount St. Vid is the highest island point in the Adriatic.