Gen Xers: What Are You Worth As A Freelancer On Upwork?

Use Your Experience to Determine Your Worth

Full disclosure.

I started this newsletter to explore new income avenues.

While my Google Ads biz pays the bills, there's a need for diversification.

So, I'm trying to determine my worth beyond Google Ads.

And honestly, so far, not much. I haven’t made a single penny from this newsletter.

In fact, I’m in the hole. (Don’t tell my wife)

BUT it's because I'm still learning in this new market.

I can invest time and money here, thanks to my Google Ads income and other sources.

If shit really started to hit the fan and I needed money fast, I know exactly where I’d go to find the worth and get some money rolling in.

That’s why I always recommend people start there.

So today, I thought it would be fun for us to do a quick exercise to find our worth.

How To Find Your Worth Fast

One of the great things about Upwork is we can easily find what our skills and experience are worth in the open, non-job market.

Here’s a quick 30-minute exercise I whipped up with the help of my trusty AI assistant (to make sure I didn’t miss anything).

Let’s start;

1. Reflect on on your skills (5 minutes):

a. Quick scan:

Mentally skim through your past jobs, significant projects, and notable hobbies.

Write them down.

  • Here is an example from my experience for inspiration: my hobbies of playing guitar and fantasy football were both directly and indirectly responsible for income streams via blogging, podcasting, and helping me get my foot in the door with clients.

b. Key Experiences:

Think of standout moments where you felt accomplished or delivered value. What were you doing? Who did you help?

Write them down.

  • Here is an example from my experience for inspiration: I helped a sales guy understand internet marketing at the company I worked for at the time. It was a very new topic back in 2006, and his asking me was significant because I was in a different estimating/engineering role at the time (not marketing… yet).

c. Immediate Skill Recognition:

What software did you use frequently? Did you lead any projects or teams? Did you write, design, or solve problems?

Write them down.

  • Here is an example from my experience for inspiration: I worked on many special projects because I was in new product development. One that stood out was co-heading up the team that helped the engineering department transition from 2D AutoCAD to 3D Solidworks software. I wrote SOPs, created standard documentation, and used Microsoft Excel a lot back then. These experiences helped me win many clients over the years (some that I’ve been with for over 6 years now).

2. Categorize your skills (5-7 minutes):

a. Hard Skills:

Immediate software proficiency, any languages spoken, or certifications. E.g., "Excel", "Spanish", "PMP Certification”.

Write them down.

b. Soft Skills:

Immediate interpersonal abilities you believe you excel in. E.g., "Team Coordination,“ "Problem-Solving,” "Client Communication,” “Beer Pong” (kinda kidding about that last one. Just seeing if you’re still with me).

Write them down.

3. Validate Your Skills (10 minutes):

a. Upwork Skill Exploration:

Head to the search box in the top right.

First, search “Talent” using the skills that you’ve identified.

This will give you an idea of what other people are getting paid for their services.

Second, one by one, search “jobs” in the same search box.

Type in 3-5 skills/experiences from your list into the search bar, one at a time

Take note of the number of job listings that appear for each. This gives an immediate sense of demand.

For clarity, I made a video walking you through this. Press play below and check it out…

Remember, this is just a quick scan.

Once you get an idea of what’s out there, you can dig deeper into your other skills and experiences to look for more opportunities.

What’d You Find?

After you’ve completed the exercise, what promising gems did you uncover about your skills?

Drop a comment below the video to share the top-paying talent you've found.

Your insights not only motivate me but anyone else reading this post.

Let's celebrate and uplift each other.

Chug Project

Today’s music selection isn’t for everybody.

But if you like metal and like having music on in the background while you work, you’ll dig it.

No singing, no solos, just chug.

Check it out, and you’ll see what I mean.

Like I said, not for everybody. But I freakin love it. 🤘 

Anyway, do the short exercise above; then let us know the highest-paying skill you found in the video comments.



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