I'm sure I'm not the only one to have noticed that jobs/projects never seem to come one at a time. They're like the velociraptors in Jurassic Park
: when you stumble upon one out in the jungle somewhere, you can be sure there's more of them flanking you in the bushes just waiting to jump out and disembowel you. Only less bloody. Unless you're a hit man or mercenary or something I suppose... Anyway, my point is that it seems to be a Law of Business that you can never be only doing one thing at a time.
This law even seems to apply to freelancing. Having finished off some projects and being left with a little free time, the leads on new work were coming in slowly recently. Then, all of a sudden, a nice juicy lead pops up out of nowhere in the wilds of Craigslist. Had I thought of my dinosaur simile earlier, I wouldn't have been so surprised when, within a day, two more had surfaced. And this at a time when some of my side projects are starting to ramp up as well. Fortunately, unlike a velociraptor attack, this is good news. I was lucky enough to have a nice quiet period in terms of work while Jessi
and I were moving into our new condo, and now that we're mostly finished with that I've got what's starting to look as though it may be a glut of work to help us start saving for the remodeled kitchen in our future. It's a good thing it didn't work out the other way around or I'd probably be pretty miserable right now.
So anyway, it looks like I've got some choice new projects coming up. There are, as usual, a few web things to do, but the biggest thing of note is that I may be taking steps towards pushing my consulting business in a new and exciting direction: IT strategy consulting. At my previous job in San Francisco I was used to filling pretty much every rung in the IT ladder. I did everything from helping people format their Word docs to designing the IT infrastructure for a new office and spending tens of thousands of dollars to contract for its implementation. So though I've been focusing more on the support and implementation roles in the work I've done so far, I definitely have some experience in doing more. I've now got a chance to do just that and hopefully establish myself a little further up that ladder. This has always been part of my plan, though I expected it to take a little longer to actually find an opportunity to try and move into that space.
Hopefully this will also provide the opportunity (and income) to take another step that's been part of my planâ€”and of which inklings of impending reality have lately been appearingâ€”hiring employees. I've actually been approached in the past about hiring someone on, but never at a time when I could realistically think about doing it. If things go well in the next few weeks/months, I may be able to (need to, even) start thinking about actually doing that. This, of course, would be a huge step in many ways.
And, as I always knew to be the case, the most useful tool in getting to this point has been networking. Advertising will always bring in some work, but if you want to be proactive about it, there's no better way to go about it than to just get out there and meet people. Of course to do that you need to know where to go to meet the the sort of people that are actually likely to buy what you're selling. Fortunately, I just the other day met Mark Doerschlag who runs MarksGuide.com
, a site dedicated to networking and networking events in Boston. He's pointed me towards a couple different events that I'll be checking out in the near future, including the web innovators group
of Boston (which is, in name at least, quite reminiscent of the SFWIN
events I often attended while I was in San Francisco (doesn't look like they're actually related though). So with luck this will help accelerate things even further.
In other news, this weekend marks my favorite event in the sporting year: the opening matches of the RBS 6 Nations rugby tournament
. Making it an even better thing, now that I'm in Boston instead of San Francisco the first match of the day starts at 8:30 am instead of 5:30 am, so there's a change I might even wake up and drag myself down to the Phoenix Landing to watch it live (something I haven't been able to do since 2004 when I spent a week and a half in London)! So five of the next eight weekends should find me at the Phoenix, hopefully not surrounded by rabid Ireland fans who won't much appreciate my (much needed, but sadly not very effective) cheering of Scotland. At least Scotland are playing England on Saturday, so the Ireland fans will be on my side for that match...
All in all, it appears that good things are ahead (as behind).