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Consulting Lessons Learned - Outline


I’ve been working as a software consultant for over 15 years. The last 7 years of that has been in the San Francisco Bay Area, mostly in full-stack web development. I’ve helped my clients find product-market fit, make millions of dollars, and raise their next round of funding (see: testimonials). I’ve helped my friends with their consulting practices. After many nudges from them, I thought it may be useful to write up what I’ve learned so far. (more context)

My intent is to share what I had to learn the hard way, not write an advice blog. If you find yourself thinking “you said x but it doesn’t apply to me because of y”, you’re probably right.

I’ll link to books and other articles when I don’t have anything at least somewhat original to say on a topic.

Ideas on what to cover

  • Why do it?
    • Fun lifestyle
    • Upside / Variance tradeoff
    • Breadth of experience
  • The business of consulting
  • Finding work
    • Bootstrapping your network
    • Shareworthy stuff
    • Referral from programmer friends
    • Referral from your other clients
  • Client red flags
    • Inexperienced
    • Doesn’t really understand what’s involved
    • Rants about earlier developers
    • Project funded with personal money
  • Closing
  • Billing Rate
  • Productized consulting
  • Retainer agreements
  • Little things that have disproportional impact
  • Zen through feast and famine
  • What I wish I had done
    • Write more
    • Meet more people
    • OSS + SaaS + Consulting

What else would you like to see?