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An Upside-down Job Fair for Freelancers & Consultants (and clients who want to hire them)

3 minute read
by Alex Hillman

If you run a solo service business or hire consultants/contractors to help with your business, I’m working on an event designed just for you.

First, imagine a sort of job fair, but without all of the hinky grossness and more focused on equal parts building genuine professional relationships + learning how to be a better professional.

Then, imagine flipping the typical power dynamic of companies and individuals on its head. Instead of companies having “tables,” at this event it’s the freelancers, consultants, and solo business owners who possess skills and expertise for hire that make up the marketplace; meanwhile, companies who want to hire people with skills and expertise on a contract-basis can find people they connect with, and start making personal connections.

In a lot of ways, this approach takes a few of the key elements of Indy Hall:

  • building trust through personal connections
  • learning/sharing
  • bringing together people who are motivated to improve in some way

…and “bottles” them up for a single afternoon.

We’re calling it “Philly Freelance Fest”

And it’s not just for freelancers, it’s for any kind of solo service business owner, consultant, or person who offers their expertise and skills for hire.

And we have a date and a venue!

When: Thursday, January 30th from 2-8pm.
Where: REC Philly’s new venue in the Fashion District (aka The Gallery) at 9th and Market.

This event has more moving parts than I’m used to, so we’re collaborating with Catherine Sontag who is the creative/operational mind behind many cornerstone events of Philly Tech Week and a newly minted freelancer herself!

There will be programming and low-pressure networking opportunities for beginner, intermediate, and expert solo business owners alike. Even companies who want to hire freelancers will have an opportunity to level up their approach to hiring and managing projects with outside contractors.

Ultimately, the goal is more successful solo biz owners, better client relationships, and a more resilient freelance ecosystem in Philly.

What to expect

For freelancers & solo business owners, you can expect:

  • A schedule of workshops & clinics to help you identify key elements of your solo business and do it better (e.g. finances, marketing, etc) with options for beginners and more experienced solo biz owners.
  • Opportunities to meet other freelancers and solo business owners who you can connect with, and potentially, find ways to collaborate.
  • A posse of freelance-friendly clients who are looking to meet and hire people like you on a contract basis.
  • Access to ongoing resources to help you be a more successful freelancer.

If you run a company or agency who hire (or want to hire) freelancers & consultants:

  • A clearer picture of what kinds of freelance and consultant talent exists in Philly that you could hire to help with your business
  • Guidance and best practices for how to most successfully engage with freelancers (it’s different from hiring employees, and it’s easy to get it wrong)
  • A glimpse into the future of work as the US population shifts rapidly towards this model of work, for better and for worse

We’ll have a more detailed schedule soon…but if you trust that we’ll do a good job you can get an early ticket + some bonuses this weekend, you just have to sign up for the waiting list at the link below.

Also, if you know of any companies (think: agencies, bigger corporations, etc) who hire freelancers or want to and would be interested in an event like this to grow their talent network, drop me a line directly: [email protected]

You can get on that waiting list are here: https://phillyfreelance.com and please help spread the word!

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Hey, thanks for reading!

Alex Hillman I am always thinking about the intersection of people, relationships, trust and business. I founded Indy Hall in 2006, making us one of oldest fully independent coworking communities in the world. This site is packed with the lessons and examples I’ve learned along the way. You can find me on Twitter, too! 🐦 Say hi.