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The Freelance Paradigm Is The New Normal

  This week’s focus has been on building our consulting division, In The Black Partners.   I announced the addition of a new consultant, a CFO level professional with experience as a freelancer. I scheduled two meetings to talk with potential freelancers interested in joining our group. I had lunch with a client to tell her about our program and capabilities. I scheduled a smoker for next week to get our group together for some fellowship.  And, I added a virtual assistant to help our team, and promote her business.

In 2001 I read Daniel Pink's book, Free Agent Nation: The Future of Working for Yourself.  That publication was timely as I had recently begun my career as a free agent, focused on Executive Search. Mr. Pink was spot on predicting the growth of freelancing, as this trend has continued unabated.  By 2020, Freelancers are expected to account for 40% of the workforce.  His thesis validated the decision to start my business. 

Much has been written about Millennials who have chosen freelancing as a career or to augment their incomes. Many of these people perform SEO writing and graphics design to aid businesses in their digital marketing efforts. Others are engaged in developing Apps, and of course, a large component, are Uber drivers.  To support this trend, on-line services, like Upwork.com and Fiverr.com offer platforms to connect freelancers with customers.

By 2006 some of my clients began asking for help with significant issues which could be resolved in a short time frame.  As their needs did not require full-time equivalents, I placed consultants or freelance project managers.  I recognized the value of free agents at that point but didn't see it as a trend that would reshape my practice.  In fact, my business was in high gear.  However, I knew the demand for free agents was accelerating.

Finally, in 2014 I joined a group of freelancers to capitalize on this opportunity. We branded ourselves as In The Black Partners, drafted a business charter, created a logo, and built a website with email capabilities.  Our strategy is to help small, emerging companies and established mid-cap brands, resolve their strategic issues. 

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It wasn't long before we found ourselves in the classic time management trap.  We were so busy that we couldn't focus on building our team. This year I set a goal to recruit more consultants.  We are looking for Baby Boomers who find it difficult reconnecting with the market; executives with corporate experience who want to make a contribution.  These folks enable us to fulfill our mission.

The fundamental problem for most freelancers is devoting time for business development while managing their current projects. It is often called “the feast or famine cycle” as new projects aren't generated seamlessly to replace completed projects. Most people are good at performing the work they are hired to do, however, business development isn’t a strong suit. We provide an umbrella for freelancers, working under a brand to defeat the "feast or famine cycle."

Another issue faced by freelancers is the ability to leverage time to expand their revenue potential.  One of my colleagues, I call him "Old School," often complains that he cannot take on new work because he has exhausted his available time.  I remind him to develop someone to take over his lower value-added tasks or subcontract some of his work.  He would retain responsibility for quality control while making better use of his time.   Working with a group of consultants helps build our revenue beyond that which they could achieve on our own.

I remain convinced that this strategy is aligned with the New Normal. As more and more companies become comfortable with a blended workforce where freelancers work alongside full-time employees, the opportunities will continue to grow.  Likewise, free agents need support to build and manage their businesses.   It is a win-win-win proposition.

Thank you for visiting my blog.  I hope you enjoyed my point of view and would like to receive regular posts directly to your email inbox. Toward this end, put your contact information on my mailing list.  

Your feedback helps me continue to publish articles that you want to read. Your input is important to me so; please leave a comment.

 

Jim Weber, President

New Century Dynamics Executive Search

JimWeber@NewCenturyDynamics.com

Author of: Fighting Alligators: Job Search Strategy For The New Normal

 

Job Search Strategy For The New Normal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Current Assignments

1. COO- Atlanta-based Casual Dining Restaurant Company – New

2. Director of Business Dev, Atlanta-based B2B Professional Services Company: Complete
3. Payroll-Benefits Manager, Atlanta-based Retail Company:  Complete
4. Senior Accounting Manager – Atlanta-based Manufacturer. Complete
5. Controller – Atlanta-based Restaurant Company: New

6. Outplacement Assignment – Atlanta-based Manufacturer:  New

 

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Jim Weber Bio
Prior to forming New Century Dynamics in 1999, Jim Weber spent 22 years with Fortune 500 franchising companies in the Food Retailing Industry where he developed a broad-based portfolio of “hands-on” line and staff experience in growth and turnaround situations.
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Breaking News

October 7:  ITB Partners closed a deal to help a client get their franchised business up and running.  The client signed our contract to help them develop a franchise area agreement.

August 14, 2017: New Century Dynamics Executive Search completes Controller Search for an Atlanta-based Consumer Products Company.

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June 14, 2017: New Century Dynamics Executive Search lands Controller Search for an Atlanta-based Consumer Products Company.

April 20, 2017: New Century Dynamics Executive Search lands Outplacement Assignment for Key Client.

April 4, 2017: New Century Dynamics Executive Search Announces that Offer of Employment has been accepted for Senior Accounting Manager Search assignment: Atlanta-based Manufacturer.

March 13, 2017: New Century Dynamics Executive Search Announces the Completion of a search for a Human Capital Manager.

March 1, 2017: New Century Dynamics Executive Search Announces a new Search Assignment: COO for a Southeastern-based Casual Dining Brand. Your interest and referrals are welcome.

January 8, 2017: New Century Dynamics Executive Search announces new assignment: Controller for a Southeastern-based Casual Dining Brand.

January 16, 2017: Bill Black Joins ITB Partners

Bill Black brings over three decades of accomplishment-laden marketing experience in the food service and retail industries, having served as a Marketing Executive for some of America’s most recognized and loved brands, including Starbucks Coffee Company, Dunkin Donuts, Baskin-Robbins and Krystal Hamburgers. Read more at: http://www.itbpartners.com/bill-black.html

November 23, 2016: New Century Dynamics Executive Search announces new assignments: Payroll-Benefits Manager – Atlanta Based Retailer; Business Development Manager; Atlanta-Based Marketing Research Company.

June 29, 2016: New Century Dynamics Executive Search announces a new assignment: Senior Accounting Manager – Atlanta-based Manufacturer

June 4, 2016: New Century Dynamics Executive Search announces a new Coaching Client.

May 31, 2016: New Century Dynamics Executive Search announces a new search assignment: Controller, Orlando, FL based restaurant company.

May 29, 2016: “Fighting Alligators: Job Search Strategy For The New Normal” By James E Weber, is now available for purchase on Amazon.com.

May 17, 2016: New Century Dynamics Executive Search announces a new search assignment: AP Specialists for an Atlanta-based Manufacturer with a global reach.

April 27, 2016: New Century Dynamics Executive Search announces a new search assignment: General Manager for Southern Sports Club.

April 4, 2016: New Century Dynamics Executive Search announces that our candidate has accepted our client’s offer to become Plant Manager for Lawrenceville, GA plant.

March 7, 2016, Jim Weber announces the pre-launch of his new book: Job Search Strategy For The New Normal. Refer to new page, “Book” at our Website.