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How to be successful as a Director-level Independent Worker

If you want to be successful as a
Director-level Independent Worker, you need to…

Have a viable professional product

Make sure you are clear on your strengths, what you have to offer and your value.  You need to understand how to differentiate yourself.

Identify and Understand your market

You need to know this because these are the people and their organisations who will buy your professional product. You might think that those outside your market will provide referrals.  Maybe. But never ever as much.

Understand your market’s context and positioning

Read all about being a Self Drive Worker elsewhere on this website.  You are positioned in the 47% of the 32m working population in the UK.  Even if you don’t agree with this interpretation, your own answer is bound to be somewhere near. You might think you are in a lonely place; NOT true!

Be very good at what you do – and stay good – specialists generally do better than generalists

Always remember, you are as good as your last job. Keep yourself refreshed personally with fitness and professionally by taking part in CPD activities to keep on top of your chosen field of work.

Know how to get the work

Marketing and selling – these two different things are all-pervasive.  You are doing it all the time. Similarly, there is no one section on this website that covers it all. It’s all over and everywhere!

No sales equals no revenue.  So – if winning business is not something you have done in the past, develop your client relationship and influencing skills and learn from every client conversation.  Always remember that people buy from people – so winning respect, credibility, trust and achieving a level of client chemistry always comes before an order.  Be yourself, be authentic and, above all, develop a ‘client mind-set’ which enables you to understand a client’s needs.  Seeing things from the other side of the table always impresses and leads to better quality proposals and solutions.  95% of an Independent’s success is based on understanding what the client brief is all about.  This takes skill and experience and is always work in progress!

Let your friends know what you do and invest in building your network.  Networking is much more than just winning business, it’s also about collaboration, support and building great relationships.

Manage your own Practice

Set yourself up with good advisers – an accountant, lawyer and others you may need.  Choose wisely and choose people who are not just good technically but who want to work in collaboration with you.  Chemistry is everything.

Manage your time wisely – work on priorities, be organised and efficient in the way you run your business, you can then put your focus on being with clients.

Don’t be afraid to ask for support.  “No-one is wiser than all of us!”  You will always have peaks and troughs and it’s good to step back and talk things through with someone you trust.

Work harder than ever you expected – the harder you work, you luckier you get – and we all need some luck.

Your reputation is everything so develop and protect it.

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