How to land a five-figure design/UX job

Louise Campbell wrote a great article titled “How I Landed My First 5-Figure UX Design Contract”, but it really could be “how to get a job”. Steps are simple:

  1. Find where you want to work (limit yourself to people who can pay you fairly)
  2. Use technology to stalk them.
  3. When they’re ready, jump on the opportunity.
  4. Prepare for your pitch.
  5. Ask smart questions.
  6. Do a ton of free work up front to show them you get them.

I’d agree with all except #5. I’ve found clients who *expect* free work up front, will expect free work later, and aren’t the clients I want to work with. That step *might* be necessary, and as an employer I definitely appreciate it… but I also appreciate people who do a reasonable amount of work upfront and then ask me to pay them to do the work.