It’s been a busy few weeks for KPSol, both in and out of the office.
We’ve been raising money for Breast Cancer Awareness, attending exhibitions and strategy planning for fast approaching 2013.
All of this activity means we’ve been connecting with colleagues, partners and clients more than ever and I’ve been thinking about our Freelancer and Contractor clients who don’t always have the luxury of someone sitting across a desk from them.
So how do Freelancers and Contractors connect with one another?
One sector that appears to be actively encouraging networking amongst its peers is that of the Oil and Gas sector. What would outwardly appear to be an insular career path is just not so when it comes to Oil and Gas Freelancers and Contractors. KPSol are regularly invited to attend conferences, events and trade shows within this industry and we were delighted when, on the 8th October, Gastech returned to London after 40 years.
Our stand proved to be a popular installation with the inclusion of a reaction testing machine, used by Formula One teams for driver training. It wasn’t easy to resist the challenge, as you’ll see from the image of our very own Managing Director, Steve Wynne.
Professor Brian Cox OBE, Research Fellow, Author, Broadcaster, CERN Project & BBC Television had this to say about the conference and exhibition;
“To be able to talk to the people at the cutting edge, you know, you’ve got your people here who are important, influential and employers of people that I and my colleagues in the university sector educate, so for me, that’s a real value.”
However, not all industries hold regular events and what of Freelancers and Contractors working offshore, overseas or those who simply can’t afford to take the time away from their businesses.
Social media is one option but it’s also a hotly debated communication method amongst the business community and this includes Freelancers and Contractors. One school of thought and the generic advice has been to only connect with those companies that could offer you a contract immediately. The thinking is that if you are using social media as a marketing tool, then you should only target potential clients and that other connections won’t lead to paid work.
But who knows where your Freelance and Contractor connections could lead? Today’s entrepreneur may well be the next Steve Jobs or your Freelancer contacts may make the move back into a traditional environment and a position that could provide you with future contracts.
Freelancers have many and varied skills which often complement each other. Knowing someone you can team up with could make the difference between you winning a contract or not. Knowing your industry and your peers and keeping a regular dialogue with them also means that you’re first in line when it comes to work referrals.
Of course, like any networking method, relationships take time to develop and if you view social media purely as a method of generating new business you’re likely to become disillusioned fairly rapidly. But if you’re looking for a way to stay connected to your peers, industry news and for a method of getting a quick and candid opinion, it could well a medium worth exploring.