Pietro Grandinetti was working on a Big Data project at CNRS when a coworker told him that they freelanced part-time on the side. He was amazed to learn that applied scientists like himself could actually find freelance work.
“At that time, I had the wrong impression that either you are a web developer or you can’t freelance,” he says. Pietro has a PhD in Automation Engineering, and he was working on systems to improve road traffic patterns. But his project was ending soon, so he decided to find out more about these freelance options.
“Two years later,” Pietro says, “I think I made a really good choice.”
Pietro is one of the thousands of professionals at the tops of their fields who freelance through Toptal — but if he hadn’t heard about freelancing from a colleague, he might never have known about this opportunity. That’s because most people don’t think freelancing is an option for them.
Our mission as remote workers and freelance professionals is to change this perception. We’ll do it by Inspiring, Connecting, Learning, Promoting, Co-Creating, and Activating — all the things that build a culture and help us lead the remote work revolution.
Toptal is a global network of the world’s top 3% of freelance talent. We contract with people like Pietro, who are at the tops of their fields and have chosen to make the switch to remote work. Pietro joins people like David Mihal, who quit his job at Google to travel the world as a digital nomad; Ivana Miličić, who teaches UX design and volunteers in her extra hours; and Raphael Rottgen, who left the world of traditional finance to get into crypto.
It’s extraordinary at times to read through the CVs in our network — many Toptal members have quite literally worked with the world’s top organizations, and yet they have chosen to give up traditional employment for freelancing.
At one time, going freelance was seen as a career risk. No longer — this is not a passing trend, but a movement expected to increase by millions of people in 2018. As freelancers and remote workers, we’re now part of a global community that’s growing at an extraordinary rate.
Toptal has always sought to connect this community across borders and disciplines. By creating stronger bonds between freelancers, we all benefit from stronger networks, better reputability, and more opportunities to learn, grow, and succeed. In the end, that’s what we believe makes for a strong freelance career: creating your own success, while staying connected and maintaining access to outstanding opportunities.
When we heard about EF Week, we put out a call to our community throughout Europe. The response was enthusiastic, and we expect to have around 27 events on the calendar, all of which we’re supporting with budget, promotions, and for the most impactful events, gifts and swag.
Participating in EFWeek is just one part of our event strategy: we organize or sponsor large, exciting, and impactful events on a daily basis. You might have seen us recently at SHIFT Developers Conference in Split, or at RubyC in Kiev. With 450+ events so far this year, you’ve almost certainly run into Toptal somewhere.
We hope you’ll join us at one of these events. There’s likely to be one near you, and it’s an excellent opportunity to find out about what Toptal offers. You’ll get to meet people in our network, learn their stories, and ask them your questions — and if you are interested and qualified, we’ll encourage you to apply.
We’d really like to meet you during European Freelancers Week. Thanks for being a part of this extraordinary movement, and this outstanding event series.
Find out more about Toptal here.
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