Launch your independent consulting business

Step 1: Hone your niche and present it well

👋 Hey all!

Ever since I started this newsletter and shared my own story of leaving the 9-5, the #1 question I’ve gotten is “How do I work part-time”. While I’ve been able to share advice here and there in the newsletter, my goal has been to start creating more explicit guides on all the different ways to work part-time.

Lucky for me I discovered that Bradley Jacobs, who we’ve interviewed on the podcast, already created a toolkit for starting your own consulting business. Independent consulting is the most common path to controlling your own hours.

This playbook is excellent. I am using it myself to help refine my consulting pitch and get more recurring business. This isn’t a Gal Gadot Huawei situation, I would only bring an offer to readers if I felt it could genuinely be helpful and I believed in it myself.

So why do I like it? This toolkit is:

  • Concise. It’s not a long book. It’s a set of well curated articles that are quick and to the point. No fluff.

  • Actionable. Each section has action items that will take you one step closer to landing your first client and starting on the path of consulting. If you’re willing to put in the work, you will make progress.

  • Proven. There’s no snake oil here or get-rich-quick schemes. These are proven strategies that thousands of consultants have used before. It’s not magic, just sound approaches and steps to take.

The toolkit contains actionable sections to work through to start your business as well as forms, templates, and calculators.

Mylance and Part-Time Tech have partnered together to offer this playbook to all Part-Time Tech subscribers at a discount. Normally $149, as a subscriber you’ll get it for $99. If it helps you start consulting or get your first client, it’s a no brainer.

Unsure? Here’s a preview of the first section. 👇

Hone your niche and present it well

Section 1 of the Mylance Consulting Toolkit

💡 What you'll learn: how to differentiate yourself, hone in on what value you can add, and how to present that to potential clients

What sets consultants apart is how they package their experiences and skills into a comprehensive offering to a potential client. The better you package your offering, the higher your contacts will be valued and the more clients will want to work with you.

It’s important to realize the more refined your niche, the better success you’re going to have. Your goal is to find companies that have the exact need that you can deliver where your expertise is the top 1-3% in the world. Thus, you can’t simply market yourself as an “Operations Expert” or a “Software Engineer.” These titles don't stand out and a client can't differentiate your skillset from other "Operations Experts".

To work on refining your niche, we recommend using the below three-stop process, that WORKS: Mylance customers have used them to land $15k+ per month projects.

Three step process to hone your niche

First, we need to narrow in on what you've done in your career that's great.

Look back at your career to date, and write down (yes, start a Google Doc or Word Document) the professional accomplishments where you’re most proud (ideally, when you made the biggest impact to your company). Don’t forget to think about what work you enjoyed the most. We include “enjoyed the most” so that you’re pitching yourself in a way that will lead to you working on projects that you actually want to work on. That’s one of the biggest benefits of freelance consulting: you choose the projects YOU want to work on!

As you work through your professional accomplishments, think about it in the form of, “At this company, in this role, I completed tasks that achieved something for the company.” It’s important to get to the impact of the accomplishment as you think through it. Let’s say that again. It’s crucially important to get to the impact of the accomplishment.

We’ve outlined a format to highlight these accomplishments:

At [Company X], as [your role here], I [the function you did here] that accomplished [impact to the company here] and [optional additional impact to the company].

Here are some examples to help you out:

  • At Uber Freight, as Head of Carrier Operations: I launched the business and built up our Operations team that scaled automated processes across carrier acquisition, carrier engagement, and marketplace dynamics enabling us to scale north of a $1B+ valuation within 2 years.

  • At UberEATS, I worked as the Head Launcher for Miami, FL, and Milan, Italy where I hired the teams, designed and executed acquisition plans for all three sides of the marketplace: couriers, restaurants, and eaters to enable the successful launches of the cities, with Miami being the largest US UberEATS launch to date.

  • At Airbnb, as employee #7 and the first Product Manager, I led our engineering team to build our first set of products that scaled from 10 hosts to 10,000 hosts, bringing our revenue from $0 to $10 million in the first 12 months.

Second, we're going to identify your tangible, concrete skills and superpowers

Now that you have your accomplishments outlined, you can think through what it is about you that helped you accomplish these great things. These are the things that make you unique and different.

Go back to that same document where you were writing your accomplishments, and write down one sentence for each accomplishment. To make this easy, you can write down them in the format of:

I'm an expert at {action you did} for {this type of company} to accomplish {what results you drove}.

Some examples are here:

  • I’m an expert at launching markets for a marketplace company. This includes hiring up and bringing together a team, designing a go to market strategy, executing the strategy, keeping all teams on track and troubleshooting where necessary, and bringing it all together for a successful launch.

  • I’m an expert in launching go-to-market strategies for direct-to-consumer and retail businesses in Canada that offer a physical or digital product to consumers

  • I’m an expert in growing markets and launching new products in a two-sided marketplace. Once at scale, I bring additional expertise maximizing efficiency and profitability while continuing to identify opportunities for growth.

  • I am an expert in launching successful email marketing programs for small and medium sized businesses that increase customer engagement, retention, and purchasing rates.

Like the preview? Check out the entire toolkit.

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