[nycbug-talk] Getting started in Consulting
tux at penguinnetwerx.net
Fri Jun 3 19:54:32 EDT 2005
>> How did you first get started ?
I imagine most of us got started the same way - working a full-time job
while doing tech work on the side, then either layoffs or whatever came
about and suddenly your hobby became your job. Speaking for myself, I
got tired of working my arse off to make someone else rich, so one day I
quit my job and started working for myself full-time.
>> How did you get your first client ?
A friend of my parents was looking for someone to fix his network, and
he heard I "knew about computers." He was impressed with my work, so I
asked him if he wouldn't mind telling people that he was happy with me.
One thing led to another, and because of him, I suddenly had about 15
>> Where do you look for clients ?
The only marketing/advertising I've ever done is business cards (of one
form or another.) Word of mouth is IMHO the best advertising you can
ask for. I recently paid for a marketing deal with one of my vendor
partners, and I'll let you know how it goes after next week when I get
done with all of the follow-up calls :)
>> How do you sell FreeBSD to clients ?
I usually slip it in when they're looking for a server of one type or
another, usually a file server for the small office or a firewall. I've
found that showing them the cost comparison between Windows and FreeBSD
(licensing, purchase price, labor for installing weekly patches/updates,
etc.) is a good way to show them how expensive it can be to have a file
server. FreeBSD wins 9 out of 10 times :)
> For the most part you don't.
> My experience is with small business so anything I wrote forward is
> about that market.. (under 20 employees mostly).
> For the most part I think there are two types of clients. Those that
> want a solution and don't care how you do it and those that think they
> know what they need and tell you to do the work in a particular way.
> Those for the most part I avoid.. if they really knew how to do it, they
> would not be talking to you in the first place. :-)
> A bit of an exception is if they have someone in the shop that is a tech
> person, but not necessarily the same as your knowledge. Example if you
> are a developer and they have a network person.. There is also the rare
> case where they have a good person, but he just has so much work that
> needs some help.
*nods in agreement*
> As much as I like the live of a business owner it's a big challenge for
> us tech people because we want to spend more time doing tech work than
> doing marketting and just getting our face out there.
You got that right :)
> Then you have the issue of actually managing the business. For example
> if you get a contract, finding the right price that will keep you happy
> and the customer coming back... managing your expenses.. paying yourself
> (payroll).. health insurance... etc...
.. you get paid? :P
More information about the talk