I recently discussed my own financial missteps, due mostly to not having a very diversified client list. In fact, one of my clients was responsible for more than 50% of my invoices last year. That’s not a freelance billing cycle; that’s a part-time job.
When my latest fiscal conundrum happened, I reached out to my network to see if anyone knew of any opportunities I might be a good fit for. I was expecting a few responses. Instead, I got a legitimate lead from almost everyone I asked. And most of those opportunities stemmed from work or connections that I didn’t even know people were involved with, which reinforces my own suspicions about professional networks in general: they’re only as useful as you ask them to be.
So, here’s an idea:
By the end of 2011, I’d like to work with 100 clients.
And I’d like one of them to be you.
I’ve recently updated my services and speaking pages, to give the world (and myself) a better idea of what I actually do. And something tells me I can probably help you with a problem you’re having, an opportunity you’re preparing to undertake, or a process you can’t quite get working properly.
So let’s see just how useful we can be together.
Why Am I Doing This?
Three reasons, really.
1. Diversifying my income. As I mentioned, tying up too much of your freelance income with one client is a recipe for disaster. All it takes is one hiccup for your entire revenue stream to run dry, and if you haven’t been sandbagging emergency cash, you’re stranded.
2. Better understanding my own network. If I had no idea what half of my network was up to until I needed them, that means I’m talking about myself too much and talking to them too little. By working with them (that’s you) more often, I can not only be useful to you directly, but I can help facilitate connections between people in my network who may not otherwise know each other, or what they do. (But I can only do that if I know what you do.)
3. Expanding my portfolio. Since the vast majority of my work over the past 4 years has been done for agencies, I’m not explicitly able to list all of what I do on my services page (due to contracts, NDAs, etc.). The more work I do for a wider variety of clients, the more easily explainable my own services will actually be.
So, let’s see just how interesting things can be when our networks combine.
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