when is it too early to leave one's first job?

I have a great job as a designer with a corporation- I am fresh out of my undergraduate ID degree. I am getting great experience bringing concepts all the way to market.

My problem is that I am ready to start working on my own. I want to freelance. I am already tired of going into the office every single morning. Yet, I wonder if I should pay my dues and stay at this job for a few more years for that experience.

I know I am very talented and have knowledge and creativity to offer. I just wonder:
is one years experience too little?

No one likes their first job because you’re doing a lot of grunt, plug-and-chug design. It’s your rookie season (to use a sports metaphor).

You’ll know when it’s time to leave. It’s like out-growing a pair of shoes.

Remember, there are a ton of experienced guys out there doing freelance work. The competition gets stiff. If you’re good then you won’t have any problems. If you aren’t it’s going to be tough to pay the rent some months.

Good luck.

I can’t imagine you’ve learned all you need to learn in only one year. I would stick to the 9-5, gain more knowlege, more skills. Or, do both for a while, slowly build a small client base and network, while still pulling in the reliable paycheck.

I’ve never understood the freelance thing. it seems small design firms have enough trouble keeping a constant work flow, how does one person go about doing this any better, and without starving in the mean-time? does anyone have any success stories of cutting the rope and going it alone?

I have to agree with Copyboy on both fronts.

  1. In one year you do’t have the knowledge of business, materials and processes and so much more.
  2. Freelance is bad. After a number of years and the gaining of a lot of knowledge in a specific industry/area then you become a Consultant. This is a much better position to be in. You have something unique to sell.

Best way is to do both, at the same time. You’re young and don’t need sleep at this point of your life.

All I can say that each year I work, the more I learn.

After one year, I thought I knew a lot.
Four years later, I looked back and said, wow I learned a lot since then!
Then a few years later, I thought I knew a lot.
After eight years of experience, I looked back and said, WOW, I learned a lot.

I am around 11 years of experience now, and I am amazed at what I continue to learn.

Take the time and learn from others around you. ID, engeneering, marketing, sales and customer service. If not going to the office in the morning is your motivation for going freelance, then you are in for a surprise… :smiley: