Author Topic: Any tips on how to turn reg employment into a consulting gig?  (Read 1285 times)

tag

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So we have hit FI. But my husband may want to work a little longer. Another year maybe. Our FIRE plan involves a cross country relocation, we have a lot to do to plan and get ready. So while we are doing all that, we figure he may as well continue to work some and get paid. He earns a pretty high salary. We both wish he could cut back though. He travels a lot and works long hours, high stress, high pressure. I don't even know if it's possible in his line of work and for his current employer. But I also have no idea what it would look like or sound like if he were to go to his employer and say hey I'm thinking about retiring soon, but I'd stick around longer if we could make some changes.

Any advice?

Lepetitange3

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Re: Any tips on how to turn reg employment into a consulting gig?
« Reply #1 on: July 10, 2017, 02:37:37 PM »
Tag- have you thought about consolidating all of your stuff into one thread?  I can see where doing it separately will give you good ideas for each, but I also think you might get really good advice on the big picture if you did one thread encapsulating it all.  Food for thought

I actually did this when I had children.  I literally went to my employer and said, I have enough money and I want to spend more time with my kids.  I enjoy doing xxxx but I need to shift down into a consulting role if you'd like me and my skills to stay with the organization.  They said yes.  Granted- it's not always this simple, I have expensive and highly desirable skill sets for my former profession. 

Another option is for hubby to look at similar organizations who are looking for outside consultants. 

Ocinfo

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Re: Any tips on how to turn reg employment into a consulting gig?
« Reply #2 on: July 10, 2017, 02:44:50 PM »

I actually did this when I had children.  I literally went to my employer and said, I have enough money and I want to spend more time with my kids.  I enjoy doing xxxx but I need to shift down into a consulting role if you'd like me and my skills to stay with the organization.  They said yes.  Granted- it's not always this simple, I have expensive and highly desirable skill sets for my former profession. 

+1. It is generally rather difficult to replace highly compensated employees. Employers tend to get pretty flexible when you're ready to walk out the door in 2 weeks. Especially if it's a role that generates a big return on salary (brings in contracts, lead on critical software, etc), which is usually why one is paid a lot to begin with. What's the worst that could happen?


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tag

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Re: Any tips on how to turn reg employment into a consulting gig?
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2017, 04:12:29 PM »
Tag- have you thought about consolidating all of your stuff into one thread?  I can see where doing it separately will give you good ideas for each, but I also think you might get really good advice on the big picture if you did one thread encapsulating it all.  Food for thought

I thought of that. But I don't have all of my questions yet. I post something, get a ton of help, which leads me to my next step and my next question, so then I post that. Also, I have too many questions to do that I think....some very specific and some big picture. As long as Im not annoying others, it feels better to me to categorize my questions in a sense and post them where necessary and also as they arise. But thanks for the idea!

[/quote]
+1. It is generally rather difficult to replace highly compensated employees. Employers tend to get pretty flexible when you're ready to walk out the door in 2 weeks. Especially if it's a role that generates a big return on salary (brings in contracts, lead on critical software, etc), which is usually why one is paid a lot to begin with. What's the worst that could happen?
[/quote]

Thanks. This is what I was hoping I'd hear I think. Worst that could happen? They say no and we retire, right? And then we thank them :)

Freedom17

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Re: Any tips on how to turn reg employment into a consulting gig?
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2017, 06:25:45 PM »
I've just gone through the same thing this past week. Another team needed some help on something and I did them a favor. It helped them out a lot and supported the sales effort on a big potential contract. The team asked if I'd consider joining them and I told them I'm planning to leave the company and move overseas. They said that me working from home overseas wouldn't be a problem so this is an interesting project for me to keep working on.

They started to put boring grungy work in my pipeline and I had to learn to be assertive and tell them I'm only interested in doing the high level work that is in my domain of expertise. They seem to have taken it well. It's interesting when you negotiate from a position of strength.

I'm planning to work full time for them initially since I don't want to ask to be half way around the globe and transition to part time in one shot. Once I'm 3 months in I'll likely transition to part time, or if they balk at that I'll just quit.



tag

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Re: Any tips on how to turn reg employment into a consulting gig?
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2017, 10:28:34 AM »
Freedom17, many thanks for sharing.

Smokystache

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Re: Any tips on how to turn reg employment into a consulting gig?
« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2017, 10:44:17 AM »
I would just reinforce what some others have said and encourage you to think of this as operating from a position of strength. Your husband is offering to continue to work in a position that is "high pressure" - I'm assuming this isn't a position that a new hire could easily step into right away. If they were to hire someone to do all aspects of what your husband currently does, they will spend the equivalent of 10s of thousands of dollars in time, energy, and then training time to get them up to speed. So go into it with the perspective of "I'm offering to continue working on some of my projects and that will save you thousands (at minimum)." You don't have to say this or be cocky about it, but don't go into it with the view that they are doing you a favor - you are doing them a favor and you should be paid accordingly.

It would be a huge bonus if your husband could identify the parts of his job that:
a) have a steep learning curve
b) bring in significant revenue
c) no one else knows how to do, OR
d) everyone else hates to do it
... and (assuming he doesn't mind doing those tasks) offer to continue doing them. Then you're doing them an even bigger favor. Be sure to price your time accordingly. You are no longer an hourly or salary worker and they have a reduced cost (assuming they would stop paying benefits) - they need to pay much more than your previous hourly-equivalent wage.

Remember: You're in a position of strength and you're doing them a favor. Your BATNA (Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement; aka Plan B) is to say goodbye to a high stress, long-hours job. That's a wonderful place to be.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2017, 11:59:29 AM by Smokystache »

Lepetitange3

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Re: Any tips on how to turn reg employment into a consulting gig?
« Reply #7 on: July 11, 2017, 11:09:45 AM »
Smokestache has it.  And if he wants to work a bit and current job doesn't want to offer him consulting, he should know what other big players exist.  He should get on the horn with them and ask if they are interested in his consulting services. 

tag

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Re: Any tips on how to turn reg employment into a consulting gig?
« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2017, 01:48:07 PM »
Man this is such good info. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

We are not sure yet if he should even offer at all....just needed to hear some people talk about it before making that decision. It's something we'll have to marinate on for a couple of weeks I think.

Thanks again!