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Insights on the Freelance Economy from Building Part-Time Tech

Part-Time Tech Podcast Episode 7

Howdy everyone 🤠, today we have the 7th episode of the Part-Time Tech Podcast! For this episode, I’m the interviewee and I distill most of my learnings from building this newsletter and doing fractional work. Listen and check out the top takeaways and quotes below.

Listen on: Spotify | Apple Podcasts | Web

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This podcast originally appeared on the Human Cloud Podcast and Matthew Mottola was an incredible host. Their podcast and newsletter dive deep into the freelance economy and their audience is primarily businesses and freelance marketplaces. Check’em out!

I’ve been writing and working on Part-Time Tech for the last eight months. In that time, I’ve done my own fractional consulting and chat with nearly 100 people who represent both talent, hiring managers, and founders in the space of flexible work. It’s given me an interesting perspective on the landscape.

Matt dives deep into my personal story, how my career represents a new wave of freelancer, and what success may look like for the ever increasing number of new freelance marketplaces out there. Oh and we talk about tractors too 🚜.

Top Takeaways and Quotes

How would you describe freelancers?

  • “A lot of the people who can go freelance are actually some of the most entrepreneurial and are really effective.”

  • “I think the biggest learning is that there are people who want to be fractional, part-time, freelance, whatever we wanna call it, let’s just say non-traditional full-time. There’s not just one group.”

Why hire freelancers?

  • Efficiency matters and the best talent is not always on the market for full-time. For me, I see it so clearly this convergence of all these things in the macro, in the micro and in personal stories. I just don’t see how it doesn’t become a much bigger thing. So my call out to anybody listening is, be bold, think a little bit differently and stick your neck out there.

What’s wrong with full time employment?

  • “People are just kingdom building. Managers fight, ‘hey, I can’t accomplish my goals cause we just don’t have enough people and because we need more headcount.’ Then it’s a jockeying for position, I need that number on that spreadsheet to be four more than it was last quarter.”

  • “I think what that leads to is sort of a laziness within companies where you think the only way to solve problems is with more people. For the engineers out there, you know, if you know the mythical man month, it’s basically the fallacy that more people makes you more productive. That’s not always the case. “

  • “What I’ve started to see now is, we should have found a different way to hire those people. I waited months and quarters to figure out the pipeline, work with recruiting, gather interviewers, and try to hire this person. And we just waited and waited.”

  • “Now I’m like, wow, there were probably thousands of contractors or freelancers who were experts on this that we could have gotten within a few weeks that could have helped us through that.”

Listen to the entire thing wherever you get your podcasts.


3:51, Why Ernie made the switch

5:11, Why working this way makes sense for top talent

11:18, Impact of the pandemic

14:31, The corporate disconnect

20:43, The future of fractional leaders

40:51, The real tradeoffs between 1099 & W2

41:49, What do marketplaces have to do

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