Here’s the story of one successful contractor.
G.A.W. Associates Ltd started like most consultancies by myself, registering as a Limited company so that I could work via Agencies (i.e. I wanted them to do most of the marketing).
You know the story, when you are working as a one-man-band and in a contract,
there is little time to market yourself to setup the next job.
There are peaks and troughs but again, it’s not until you are on a contract that the
whole world seems to want you. That’s if you can believe what Agencies say!
So, I was in work and someone else wanted me. I couldn’t clone myself. God
forbid that there’d ever be two of me. So I substituted a friend for myself.
He was always going to be much better than me anyway.
Recruiting Other Contractors to Do Work
This system of recruiting others to do the work that I couldn’t, or didn’t want, to do continued to work well for the next 2/3 years.
Then I started to work smarter.
Why give the Agencies all the cream for none of the work?
I started responding to EU advertised procurements (and was quite successful).
I approached my previous full-time employers and again seemed to be welcomed
Needed Even More Contractors
This meant that I needed even more people. I got in touch with several of
the people who used to be my direct reports when I was a permie with ICL and
They seemed to like the idea of belonging to an exclusive group of over
50’s and being treated as professionals and not just bodies.
Our customers seemed to appreciate the knowledge and experience of an ‘older’ guy too (and were prepared to pay for it). (See the references on our website).
These guys in turn recommended other ‘good guys’. So the network grew.
It is great!
The guys are so experienced that I wouldn’t presume to try to manage
them. The most I can expect to do is provide a sounding board for their
queries and some element of leadership. (Which means that I don’t have to
do much and can still get out and work on contracts myself).
Onwards and Upwards
So it went on and goes on.
Just about to hit 60 myself (and I’m one of the youngest in the company).
We have an interesting and enjoyable time with lots of work outside the UK (primarily the Balkans.)
We often win against the Big 6 consultancies (and even end-up managing them).
Why employ over 50’s?
They don’t need managing – just leadership. All of them are experts in their own right. I wouldn’t presume to try to manage them.
They are reliable. They turn up on time and look the part.
Start Your Own Business
My business now has 35+ full-time consultants and associates/part-timers.
If this inspires you to go out and start your own consultancy employing only
the 50+ – then don’t, the risks are too great, the market is too small, you
need too much cash in hand to cover slow payers (and I want all the work I
can get with the least competition.)
Glyn Alexander Wild
G.A.W. Associates Ltd. Cambridge UK.
Tel: +44 (0)7885 296025 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting +44 (0)7885 296025 FREE end_of_the_skype_highlighting Fax: +44 (0)1763 837136.
Well, that’s one successful contractor. Do you know of any others?
For more great contractor success stories click on Success Stories.
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