Steve Pavlina wrote this in his blog back in 2006. Could not have said it better myself. Steve’s reason for working for yourself reflect some of the “zoo animal” context I am always harping on.
A good friend of mine recently lost a consulting job. He called me to say he had been fired. I said, “You can be fired. You’re a consultant!”
“Okay,” he said. “They ended my contract.”
The thing I was trying to get through his skull was that consultants have their own business even if it’s a business of just one person. If you crave that independence then you are never fired. You may lose a client but that’s about it. Re-framing this in your mindset is critical to understanding your role with the client and with business in general. But more importantly, it is important to you.
Now I know many of you are plain ol employees. I have been there before. But my favorite years were 2002-2008 and 2010 to…oh well 2011 (January) when I got out. Those years I was either a contractor or consultant but I always kept the consultant model in my head.
I could leave anytime I wanted. They could end the agreement anytime they wanted.
Them’s the rules.
Why would I want to subvert that with employee-think. Been laid off 4 X. Already know what that feels like. They may have herded me into the zoo but I was never good at domestication.
The best contractors and consultants acted this way. Besides I was tired of meetings, picnics, Xmas parties, titles, performance reviews and “you were a naughty boy” speeches. Oh yeah, and “trust me” from the lips of someone who was about to screw you two different ways to the moon.
Living with the uncertainty of consulting work was an easier world to handle.