Monday, March 06, 2006

The Life of a Consultant

Being a consultant or contractor has its advantages -- flexibility, challenge, constant opportunities to meet new people -- but it also means that you're a perpetual "outsider." My friend Dan Rutman has written a wonderfully witty piece entitled The Contractor's Guide to Corporate Culture that humorously captures the intangibles of fitting in with the company that's providing your temporary revenue. Although Dan is a professional contractor, his observations apply well to consulting also.

For example, on the importance of an on-site cafeteria: "Asking someone `Can I join you for lunch?' has more appeal than `Want to head over to the machine for some Jujubes and a Fresca?'"

Or his commentary on employee activities: "
Good Companies: Boat Cruise Day, Massage Day, Cake Day. Bad Companies: Interpretive Dance Day, Foreign Film Day, White Noise Day, Bamboo Under Fingernails Day." He overlooked "Causing Severe Psychological Discomfort Doesn't Really Count as Torture!" day, but perhaps he hasn't had the opportunity to observe the enjoyment of that one.

Dan had also asked me about blogging. I pointed him to Why Write a Blog for Business? on WebMarketCentral, as well as to 5 Tips for Promoting Your Blog to Popular Bloggers on Peter Davidson's excellent BeConnected blog. Peter provides some wise advice about how promoting your blog to bloggers is completely different from traditional PR.

I hope that you enjoy Dan's article, and that all of your engagements are with "good" companies.


Terms: consulting, company culture, temporary contracting

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