A BIT OF HISTORY
Over the last few years we’ve had, more or less, two types of independent consultant ask to become members of the network. The first group have been those who have already been providing their services to larger organisations. This means they’ve got their own limited company, a client base which they provide services to and have a solid reputation in what they do. They’re able to generate their own work and only very rarely do work through an intermediary and if they do, it’s through just a handful of personal and trusted relationships.
The second, smaller community have been people moving into the consulting or contracting role for the first time. They believe themselves to be highly skilled in what they do and have confidence in their ability to make a living as a freelancer. However, they’re less certain than the first group on how to get started. In many ways they join HiveMind so that we can help them better understand the freelance marketplace, provide a community which can provide back-up, advice and support, so they’re not just a “lone wolf”.
Whilst there are some obvious differences in how these groups can use the HiveMind Network, there is however a “core journey” that both are able to follow;
USING THE NETWORK TO GROW YOUR BUSINESS
The courtyard is the central hub of activity. As a social member you can search for experts, join our guilds (our communities of excellence), join forum’s, post questions, answers and opportunities and attend events (physical and virtual). There’s a few simple rules and guidelines which are covered when you apply.
JOINING A GUILD
Guilds are similar to a groups. We chose to use this 16th century term because we like the principle……
Guilds work as guardians and promoters of our knowledge, expertise, standards and shared collateral. They ensure clients and delivery experts can be confident in our commitment to quality and professionalism. In the guilds you’ll find knowledge specialised to certain areas. They aren’t really hierarchical but some guilds do naturally fall within a parent guild.
To join any guild a “guild champion” will review you’re profile to make sure it’s the right fit for you. We currently have four guilds. However, as the network grows our guilds will too!
PROVIDING YOUR SERVICES USING THE NETWORK
You have now got to know the network a little better and understand what we’re about. Some independents will want to become service providers and use the network commericially. You can apply to do this on the Hive. Either an existing HiveMind ‘Expert Practitioner’ can ‘Nominate’ you for consideration, or you can ‘Self-nominate’ and suppliment the process with client references.
Once you have applied, to make sure we are delivering the best experts to clients and creating a network that is truly an expert network for you to trust and use, we will interview and follow up with references in addition to organising a phone call so we can get to know you, your skill base and experience a little more.
CHALLENGES WE HELP YOU TACKLE
Winning work in big clients
Meeting demands of you’re clients, even when you’re busy
Knowing all the answers when it’s just you!
Relying on agencies who make big margins on your skills and add little value
Trusting people to recommend to clients
As a member you are part of a trusted and hand picked community of world class expertise who share values similar to your own. Using the network platform you can connect with members from a variety of disciplines to extend the breadth and depth of services you offer to your existing clients.
When talking to larger clients you’re able to showcase that as a network member you’re part of a commercial model that delivers work to global organisations, and at the same time maintain your own brand and reputation safe in the knowledge that you maintain control of all of your client relationships.
MEETING HIGH CLIENT DEMANDS
How can you trust introducing another expert to your client?
You’ve invested time and energy in building a trusted relationship with your clients and you’re not going to jeopordise this. This is why we believe there is a two-step approach to ensure both yours and the networks reputation is protected.
All experts in the network have been nominated, interviewed and reference checked by other experts. Prior to introducting an expert to your client we expect you to interview and brief them on your clients needs and expectations. If your client isn’t happy with their performace, they don’t pay until they are.
You never lose control of your client relationship as they’re tagged under you’re name in our platform and all delivery experts have agreed to respect other expert’s client relationshis as part of our terms.
TACKLING BIGGER CHALLENGES
Sometimes you want to work as part of a larger team tackling big challenges,
For many of our independent consultants and contractors they enjoy being part of a team rather than being the “lone wolf”. Opportunities exist to work with both our SME and enterprise level members on more complex and multi faceted engagements. Whether it’s leading the pursuit for a piece of work that’s too big for you alone, with the help of a full team in right through the proposal, pitch and delivery process, or if it’s just pulling in a colleagie or two when you need them,
Get in touch with the team
+44 (0)208 1234 335