Contracting? How To Nail It In 6 Easy Steps
Today there are probably more people in temporary and contract roles than ever before.
Whether you’re contracting as a career choice, or you’re hoping contracting will lead to a permanent job, every assignment can be a terrific opportunity to build your networks and reputation.
Here are six tips to help you nail it:
1. DON’T TRY TO CHANGE THE WORLD IN YOUR FIRST WEEK
You might have some ideas about how to do things better, and that’s great. After all, one of the benefits of hiring a contractor is having a fresh pair of eyes on the team. But get the lay of the land before you suggest improvements, or you risk raising some serious hackles. Great contractors are skilled at suggesting changes diplomatically, once they’ve proven their ability on the job.
2. MAKE SURE EVERYONE’S ON THE SAME PAGE
Sometimes a contractor can be seen as a shared resource, and you might find that everyone wants a piece of you. Get together all the tasks, prioritise them and set up a timeline. Run it by your manager – they might not be fully aware of all of the work that’s being sent your way and could have different ideas about where you should be spending your time. And, if your manager isn’t doing it, be proactive about setting up a regular catch up to check you’re on track.
3. GET DOWN TO BUSINESS
Generally, you’ll be on an hourly rate, and whether they show it or not, everyone around you will be exquisitely aware of that. So even if the rest of the team are in the habit of yabbering about last night’s episode of Game of Thrones around the coffee machine in morning, follow suit at your peril.
4. THINK ABOUT YOUR LEGACY
Document everything you’re doing, keep organised files and don’t set up show-offy spreadsheets that everyone will be scared to touch once you’re gone.
5. WORK THOSE NETWORKS
Introduce yourself to the relevant people across the business. Keep it light and friendly, and let them know what you’re doing and how you can help. Have an elevator pitch at the ready, briefly outlining your background and whether you’re a professional contractor or in the market for the right permanent role. If you’ve developed a good relationship with a colleague, be sure to connect with them on Linked In, and keep in touch.
6. NEVER GET INVOLVED IN OFFICE POLITICS
Some people tend to use contractors as though they’re a priest in confessional. Avoid these people like the plague. It will end badly, trust me.
And of course, don’t forget the basics. You know – turn up on time, dress appropriately, no leftover fish pie in the office microwave. Get it right, and you might not have to attend a job interview ever again.
Looking to jump ship into contracting? Or just searching for your next amazing contract role? Contact us at Consult and we can put you in touch with the right recruiter!