It’s been a year since I started Chambers Pivot Industries, and an update is in order.
I’m framing it as “The 3 Most Surprising Lessons” from my first year.
Into the Year That Was. (technically it’s been 13 months but it feels longer!)
Quick background: Last year, I jumped into my business development consulting practice with experience in sales, technology and marketing but with only a whiff of direction. A year later it’s starting to crystallize. Here are my 3 most surprising lessons.
1. A lot of consultants are looking for full-time jobs. This bothered me when I used to hire consultants and it still nags at me. I’ve met maybe a dozen “consultants” that when pressed say, “Honestly? I’m just doing this until I find a job. . . Got one?” Besides being a questionable job search strategy, it explains why I heard “Consulting eh? Is that, like, a full time thing?” so many times. It’s my first surprise – the word “consulting” and the words “contracting/freelance” are used interchangeably. It requires a little extra time to explain that I’m helping clients get to specific outcomes, but the word is getting around.
(that said, “helping ‘contractor/freelancers’ get full time jobs” is a market I should investigate. . .)
2. There is power in distance. I shared this with my business roundtable group a few months ago. I noticed a surprising thing as the year went on: The further I was referred outside of my network, the more those executives seemed to value my advice. You’d think that would say something about the people I was referred to, but it told me a lot more about myself. Second surprise – confidence comes from within and I simply exuded more of it with people that never saw me wearing a lampshade at the Christmas party. The advice and the results are the same, so it had to be me, right? I’m changing my worldview this year.
3. Getting results from multiple industries improves confidence. Continuing with the confidence theme, as the results of projects pour in, everyone’s confidence goes up. For me, it was one thing to “know” my advice would work and another to see the advice implemented and generating the expected measurable results. This last year I had successful engagements with retail, online retail, business to business lead generation and I’m seeing success with longer term engagements that are what I’d call “complex lead generation” in businesses where prospects are hard to find. So, my last surprise is that it’s going so well! (My lovely bride takes all the credit.)
There they are. Tres. 3 surprises.
Earth shattering? Hardly.
Enough to drive a measurable value in dollars and cents? Absolutely.
This said, I have a three part request. If you have questions about your projects with consultants/contractors, I’m happy to serve as a sounding board over coffee or beer. Second, if you have a need for business development consulting, I’m happy to take personal responsibility in helping you. Third, if you know of anyone I should talk to, I’d be honored if you put me in touch with them.
(and in case you’re wondering: Laura is still hanging in there, I still want you to wear tropical shirts and I still answer to “Gringo!“)
P.S. My website is growing weekly: 133 Blog Posts. 3 Case Studies. A tiny video that talks about my work. Please Visit.
P.P.S. I am going to launch my first online lessons package: Sales Training Weekly – a tool for the solo-preneur. More on that later.
P.P.P.S. If you’re still reading, we have a new puppy! Wilson the ABC – Amazing Border Collie.