If you work from home as an independent consultant, it’s hard not to like the flexibility and zero commute time. But you may miss the daily in-person interaction in a typical office environment. (Google Hangouts just don’t cut it!)
The day started with a chance for people to meet and mingle, complete with coffee and pastries. Then the group got to hear various consultants share what projects they’re currently working on. EM Marketing also introduced new practice areas of finance and data science and analytics.
What’s Happening at EM Marketing?
As EM Marketing Owner Ken Chen says, the Future of Work is here, now. In 2017, EM Marketing has seen a 25% increase in their base of consultants from the prior year. These marketing experts are “Get Stuff Done” types that work on multiple projects throughout the year.
EM Marketing has consultants working at big companies in the Bay Area including Facebook, Adobe, and GoDaddy, as well as long-time clients, PayPal and Intuit. Many contract roles have traditionally served as a way to augment staff or fill in for someone on maternity leave.
However, teams are becoming more open to hiring best-in-class specialists during peak times or when new work arises. Experienced consultants can hit the ground running and be laser-focused on specific deliverables. EM Marketing becomes a flexible, efficient resource for these companies.
Goal Setting and Consulting Tips
Sometimes, consultants can feel stuck in the day-to-day grind. Despite “getting stuff done” with work, they may have trouble setting goals or thinking ahead to line up the next big gig. Fortunately, Lauren Mang of Let Me Organize It had take-home tips to help consultants feel accomplished!
Tip #1 – Know Thyself
Lauren identified many mental blocks that prevent us from organizing, and how best to overcome them. For instance, what is your learning style? Do you prefer visual, auditory, or kinesthetic learning? Knowing how you learn can benefit you in interactions with others or performing different tasks.
Tip #2 – One Bite at a Time
You can tackle any overwhelming task by breaking them down. Whether you’re dealing with digital files, paperwork, a physical space, or even downsizing and relocating, you can do it one bite at a time.
Tip # 3 – Mindfulness Is Key
According to a Wall Street Journal article, “Psychologists say that clutter can be traced to what they call cognitive errors—flawed thinking that drives dysfunctional behaviors that can get out of hand.” When you organize holistically, you integrate physical, emotional, mental and spiritual aspects into your work.
Tips for Finding Your Next Gig
You may wonder what to do when “in between” and looking for your next project. Ken Chen shared some timeless tips on how to re-engage. (You can find a cheat sheet here!)
Strengths, Values, and Passions
Fellow EM Consultant Jessica Smith is a Certified Professional Leadership Coach, who helps people connect with their strengths, values, and passions and to lead authentically from there. In a two-part activity, Jessica first led small groups to identify areas of improvement in their “Wheel of Life” and to choose one segment to focus on.
The groups then brainstormed simple, practical steps they could take towards improving that area. They learned to prioritize actions based on ease and impact and discussed potential challenges and workarounds. Finally, they chose an accountability partner and created a follow-up plan.
One big takeaway from both Lauren’s and Jessica’s sessions is that a single-minded approach is not going to get you set up for success. It helps to take a step back, look at all aspects of your life, and reflect on which ones are supporting or preventing you from living the life you want.
What’s a better way to end the day with more mixing and mingling? Consultants capped a full day off with good drinks, good food, and good company at CRÚ Wine Bar in Redwood City.