The allure of freelancing. Time flexibility. Location Independence. Control your income wherever you are in the world. It’s like living THE life! What else can go wrong, right?
A lot of things. Sickness. Health concerns. And it’s good to be protected from these emergencies. The problem is, the Filipino freelancers don’t really have access to such insurance and benefits.
Freelancers are Business Owners
Besides, we are self-employed. And we don’t have the negotiating power to strike favorable deals from big HMO providers or other employee benefits providers.
That’s why our guest today built a company to cater to the much-needed wellness benefits for the freelancer market. In fact, the very first in the world.
So we are really curious, how can you actually build a successful startup in this field? Who else to ask but someone who actually did it. Here is our exclusive interview with one of our esteemed speakers in the coming Working Remote 2019, Cindy Burdette.
ALLCARE for Freelancers
Cindy Burdette is the Co-founder and CEO of ALLCARE, a company offering HMO, insurance, and other employee benefits for freelancers.
Before this, she is the head of B2B growth for Storm Technologies PH. A startup specializing in employee benefits. And with her leadership, Storm even won first prize in the Startup World Cup (SWC) held by Fenox Venture Capital.
In this regard, you are sure that ALLCARE has the experience and capabilities to deliver the best wellness package designed just for you.
Leandro: Out of all the business ideas, why did you focus on company benefits centralized on healthcare?
Cindy: Actually ALLCARE is not just healthcare but it is holistic benefits at its core. This is largely influenced by my time in STORM, a benefits technology company, and because our founding team members are all STORMers. Worker benefits are one of the least talked about things, especially for MSMEs and freelancers.
Because ALLCARE doesn’t just serve your basic health needs, we look at the overall quality of life and we envision that we help every member, whether individual or MSME, to achieve a smooth work-life experience in all aspects, not just healthcare. Moreover, value-wise, I think ALLCARE is the best, bias aside hehe.
Building a Successful Startup
Leandro: RIGHT! I saw on your website that you not only offer HMOs but also insurance. And even free internet in Coffee Bean and Grab vouchers among others! Talk about value.
I just want to ask though. Freelancers are business owners. We don’t have a boss because we boss ourselves around. In return, the growth of our freelancing career lies on our own efforts pretty much like how business owners and startups close clients every single time.
If I may ask, what are the signs of a successful startup and what are your challenges in building it? And how do you handle your team?
Cindy: Working in and on a start-up gives a different exhilarating feeling and gives people like me more room to solve different needs.
You’re always building when you work in a startup and that means there are always challenges in your way. Common challenges would be funding, market penetration, hiring among others. And now, my biggest challenge is to grow ALLCARE to be a familiar name for every worker.
My leadership style to handle this is a mix of tough love and deep, personal care so my team knows I’m with them no matter what and that relationship has borne so many fruits for all my endeavors.
Personally, I think this is my greatest accomplishment: the relationship I have with current and former teams in building these startups.
As to the signs, you really can’t define what are the signs that show you are going to be a successful startup but there aspects that can help you get closer to that goal: a solid company culture, openness to different voices and ideas/debates, a business model that makes sense, a product that people love and a brand that they care about.
Advice for Aspiring Freelancers
Leandro: That’s great! We definitely got valuable insights to build our startup-like freelancing careers. And speaking of starting, what are your tips for them to get the same lifestyle and results?
Cindy: Every journey is unique so I would veer away from getting the “same lifestyle” as those who have come before and are very successful.
If you really want to start freelancing, you need to think about your current situation and see if you can go part-time freelancing to start or if you have enough financial freedom (and other responsibilities) to go full-time freelancing.
Freelancing is very attractive if you focus just on the independence and maximum potential earnings, but there are also a lot of sacrifices right there.
Advice for those Currently Freelancing
Leandro: That’s correct! Every person has their own situation. We should tailor-fit our decisions to our circumstances.
How about for those who are currently in the freelancing world, what advice can you give them to have a better career?
Cindy: Be humble and be professional. Be of good character and integrity. Feedback and relationships are an important investment in freelancing or self-employment. Referrals, additional scope, new projects – all in visibility if every person you encounter has a good opinion about you and your work.
There you have it! Ms. Cindy Burdette! Did you learn a lot? I sure did!
If you want more, better reserve your slots now for the upcoming Working Remote Conference happening this coming September 13 and 14! We have invited high caliber speakers from here and abroad to show you how to achieve your dream lifestyle with remote working.
Hurry because the tickets are very limited. Take advantage of this opportunity! See you there!