Creating your own business and working as a freelance is quite an adventure. It gives you a sense of taking control of your life, breaking free from the norm, finally letting yourself be whoever you were always meant to be.
Being a freelance has its ups and downs. Today I will be talking about the downs. (Sorry, haha.)
Before starting, I thought I would be so scared to seek out new clients, but in the end I realized that it wasn’t the worst part of this journey.
No, what is worse… what I hate with a fierce passion…
I guess it depends on which country you create your business in, but oh my. France.
In general, French administration has a terrible reputation, and they totally deserve it. Well, when you become your own boss, it doesn’t get any better.
An example ? Creating your micro-entreprise is quick and easy. You can do it online, just a few minutes and it’s done. But. (Because there’s always a but, right ?) It took me a month to have everything ready in terms of documents I had to receive, immatriculation numbers, ID info to create a professional account on official websites etc. A month. And from what I’ve read I was lucky because it can drag up to two months or more. Yup. (And that is if everything goes well.)
I created my business in November 2020, so it’s been roughly 8 months and… Well, now I’ve realized that all these invoices I’ve made in English for international clients… I have to make a French version of each one of them in order to play by the rules. The English version is not enough in case I get an administrative check. Yay. Love doing this twice. I know it’s quite obvious when you think about it, but well, see, I’m still learning haha.
I guess it takes years to really know everything about paperwork as a French entrepreneur, and I can’t wait to be there haha. (But also, laws change all the time so urgh…)
So here are my top 3 tips in order to be effective with your paperwork !
- Read. Go on official websites, read everything you have to know about how to run your company, what you need to do on the administrative part, print it if you need, take notes, whatever but make sure you keep all the rules in mind or somewhere where you can easily check when you have a doubt. For French entrepreneurs, most of the details are there : https://www.service-public.fr/professionnels-entreprises/vosdroits/F23266 !
- Find a way to organize yourself. Whether it’s Excel sheets, an accountability software, or even hiring an accountant, decide how you’re going to deal with your paperwork, and create a space where you’re going to keep all of this together. I would recommend to have everything both in paper and in digital version, just in case.
- Discipline. Once your system is set, stick to it. Don’t be like me, don’t say stuff like “oh it’s okay, I’ll do it later” because later might be in two weeks, and that’s just not professional (even if you’re the only one to know that you’re late with, let’s say, making French versions of your invoices, in my case). Push back administrative work once, and it’s the beginning of the end, trust me.
Once I’ll be done with cleaning up my mess, I think I will start using the French software Henrri. It’s free and at least all my invoices, quotes etc will be at the same place and this will force me to do the French version of my invoices every time I need to, in a much quicker way. (Hallelujah.)
What about you ? Do you have tips on how to easily stay updated on your paperwork ? If so, please let me know !
I hope you have a lovely day, and see you next Wednesday.