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Old 05-02-2012, 11:10 AM   #21
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Yup.

If you check my name tag, you will notice that I am working about ten time zones ahead of you at the moment.

I am not kidding about travel.

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...

3) You may have to work out of town. Is that the reason for your screen name here?

.... Oh yes. You better be good.
Very good point, we'll see... in my 20+ years, I've never been terminated for performance, so I hope to continue bringing value to my clients.
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Old 05-02-2012, 11:03 PM   #22
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Travel depends on where you live, of course. If you're in software and live in Silly Valley, then you can get local contracts easy. If you're in Topeka, you'll have to travel sooner rather than later.

I use airbnb or priceline and, for extended periods, find a room on craigslist.
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Old 05-05-2012, 07:25 AM   #23
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I would not do your type of traveling for contract employment. I would/have traveled for several weeks at a time for previous employers. I would enjoy the bench time until I was broke. Thanks for your feedback.

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Yup.

If you check my name tag, you will notice that I am working about ten time zones ahead of you at the moment.

I am not kidding about travel.
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Old 05-05-2012, 07:30 AM   #24
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Unemployment rate in the MN is fairly low, about 5.8%. There has always been a shortage of workforce in my area of work, so I can see opportunities frequently. I'm hoping to stay in the area with limited travel. Thanks for the suggestions on the websites.

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Travel depends on where you live, of course. If you're in software and live in Silly Valley, then you can get local contracts easy. If you're in Topeka, you'll have to travel sooner rather than later.

I use airbnb or priceline and, for extended periods, find a room on craigslist.
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Old 05-05-2012, 10:27 AM   #25
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Regarding the travel, I definitely understand personal reasons you may want to avoid it; but, just something I have found that you may want to consider which I have never understood: It seem to be true whether you are an independent contractor or member of a global consulting firm: You worth (pay, respect,etc.) on any given project seem to directly proportional to the distance you have traveled to do your work.

Even though I used to have many more opportunities presented locally, the [relatively] few that came my way which involved significant travel also paid significantly better. For many of those gigs, I have to imagine a local candidate could have been found. (I have also worked on many local projects where expert talent was being flown in from across the country that I could have easily replaced locally at much lower cost.)
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Old 05-06-2012, 09:32 AM   #26
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First, you must agree to use the consultant/contractor motto at every opportunity. "It depends..."

I was a consultant/contractor on and off for a decade or two or three. My advice is to try it. Temp work is an eye-opener. Six years ago I took a temp job, and went full time with megacorp. Without a working spouse to supply the baseline dollars, it is difficult for most to survive as contractors.

The contracting landscape has changed, as have various industries. My opinion is that companies use temps to try before they buy, or it is definitely project-type work, and projects come to an end. In either case, it comes to an end. You must plan for that and bank the extra cash you receive. Also, don't plan on receiving extra beyond what a perm makes. It is not always that way. In the perm job I have, I was offered exactly what I was making as a temp. No negotiation was possible. This is not true for every company, but I suspect megacorp didn't get large by spreading the wealth.
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Old 05-06-2012, 08:57 PM   #27
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Quote:
It seem to be true whether you are an independent contractor or member of a global consulting firm: You worth (pay, respect,etc.) on any given project seem to directly proportional to the distance you have traveled to do your work.
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Old 05-08-2012, 09:59 PM   #28
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Got it... will that increase my billable hours

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First, you must agree to use the consultant/contractor motto at every opportunity. "It depends..."
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Old 05-08-2012, 10:03 PM   #29
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Travel and overtime seems to be a badge of honor. I'm willing to hang up that badge until further notice


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"It seem to be true whether you are an independent contractor or member of a global consulting firm: You worth (pay, respect,etc.) on any given project seem to directly proportional to the distance you have traveled to do your work."
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Old 05-12-2012, 09:19 AM   #30
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Contract assignment started last week and logged 40 hours.

Megacr*p is paying me 2 weeks to be oncall plus my 3 weeks of banked vacation time.... padding the bench time/emergency fund.
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Old 05-12-2012, 10:58 AM   #31
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I should mention: usually there is NO overtime (when you sign on). Still, at some point in the project (IT, engineering, whatever), Project Management discovers (Alors!) that 'We can't meet the deadline!" Then it is Katie-bar-the-door.

I am where I am now a little over a year. The epiphany has just come to the brain trust. I am waiting for the green light. When they get the hell out of the way, we will burn up the road. [Ten minutes of silence for Carrol Shelby, please.]

Verdammt Ingenieur (AKA Leadfoot)
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Old 05-12-2012, 11:01 AM   #32
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Got it... will that increase my billable hours
It will. It establishes you as an authority. One mistake you might make as a consultant is to quickly give answers. However, you must take the time to survey all inputs in order to determine correct outputs. It is likely that you'll enter an environment where chaos and personal agendas reign above all else.

Congratulations on the contract.
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Old 05-12-2012, 11:06 AM   #33
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As one of my mentors told me, In chaos, there is overtime.

You might remember that those who need help the most, don't know they need help. Avoid them.

Corollary: Avoid amateurs. Seriously!
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Old 08-19-2012, 11:47 AM   #34
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Just a quick update -

I made a switch to contracting/consulting 3 months ago, it has reduced so much stress and work hours. Going from 55 - 60 hours with no OT pay to 40 - 45 hours with straight time pay has made me very happy as I don't feel taken advantage of. Assignment will definitely be more 18 - 24 vs. 12 months as originally discussed. My straight time pay increased 33% from the previous job and the OT is just icing on the cake.

My biggest challenge so far was more of letting management duties go and wondering about everything. Now, I'm enjoying being the Project Manager and Subject Matter Expert on two projects/assignment. Some of the simplest tasks (organizing chaos) are getting responses like "nice job", great, super". If this continues, I'll never look for perm work again.
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Old 08-19-2012, 12:01 PM   #35
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Thanks for the update, Aiming. Glad to hear everything worked out so well for you!
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Old 08-20-2012, 09:12 AM   #36
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Welcome to the Dark Side, grasshopper.

el Gitano,
AKA Old Nick
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Old 08-23-2012, 02:11 PM   #37
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Thanks for the update; glad this is going well for you.
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