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Nation of Free Agents? Independent Contractors? Temporary Workers?

— feeling big smile
30+ Brain-Exercising Creativity Coach Businesses to Open: How to Use Writing, Music, Drama & Art Therapy Techniques for Healing - Anne Hart

 

A free-agent nation of independent contractors and temporary workers

 

Eighty-six percent of independent temping jobs are found through someone who already knows you. You find independent temporary work by taking a marketing and/or negotiation class and talking to those around you about how to negotiate and contract. Learn how to set up a contract with a potential employer/client by role-playing with those in your marketing class. You may wish to check out my paperback book, 30+ Brain-Exercising Creativity Coach Businesses to Open: How to Use Writing, Music, Drama & Art Therapy Techniques for Healing,  by Anne Hart. Published December 25, 2006.

 

Draw up a boiler-plate contract and add your own terms. Who do you want to serve? You have to define your target market or client and draw up your contract around that target.” Free agents are independent temps who use temping to express themselves as they temp around the world. Their message is “who you are is your career,” not what you do. Independent temps negotiate for higher health insurance rate and name their own payscale.

 

If their skills are scarce, they can bargain because employers become their clients. They become a one-person temporary staffing service. The idea behind being a free agent is to leverage your marketing by creating visibility. If you’re an assertive  risk taker, you can ask for flexibility. To become a free agent, you first think of yourself as a name brand. Decide what skills you stand for. If you are a brand, people will latch onto you. You first need confidence, and that only comes from commitment and honesty. If independent temping is what you believe and what you were called to do, you can draw confidence from that.

 

When you define your target market as a free agent independent temp, you need to know what the current rate to charge is for each contract. What’s you fellow temp asking? Set specific objectives with measurable, actual results. Know what’s available.  Negotiate your hourly fee, mileage, and other expenses as well as health insurance and benefits. Negotiate the cost of correspondence if you provide your own paper, printer, computer, or other tools at home. Your experience determines what you charge, as well as the current rate in your city. It changes monthly, so be sure your price quote is updated.

 

Free agents think about their temporary jobs as projects, with each project having a beginning, middle and end like a novel. The end is your goal. Free agents are networkers. To get work, you have to make visible the last project on which you worked. You show the result of what you accomplished so clients or employers will know your goal. Free agents put their own stamp on their work. Stamping, like branding your name, helps you to be more self-reliant. A good book to read on this subject is The Circle of Innovation, by Tom Peters.

 

Free agent temps often sit down with tax preparers and learn how to fill out a Form 1099 for independent contractors. Anything you negotiate, get in writing. Use a standard contract and publicize your new project so everyone on the board of directors knows about what project your doing. Join a business, trade, or professional association related to your project or business. After you finish an independent temp job, send a thank-you note to whomever hired you and supervised you. You can even use a follow-up newsletter about your independent temping that includes projects you’ve worked on or names of companies who used your service. Temping as a free-agent is not a one-time event.

 

One of the best ways to get a temp job as an independent free agent is to contact universities and ask to work on projects as a contractor. If you temp for staffing services, you might take a sabbatical and try temping independently as a free agent. Sabbaticals are not only for professors anymore.

 

Women who begin temping after the age of 60 experience a late midlife crisis different from the one they experienced at 40. After 60, the goal is how to avoid swimming with the sharks and still keep a ceiling over your head. The experience is “It has to be my way now,” a time squeeze that focuses on keeping values and health. From Gail Sheehy’s New Passages to Allen St. James’s,  How to Live A Simple Life, the free agent independent temp over age 60 works because they need the income.

 

 In the U.S. there are more than 14 million self-employed people. Independent contractors make up 8.3 million, and 2.3 million are temporary employees. Less than half of these temporary workers are free agents who are defined as temporary independents who showcase their skills to employers on 5-day a week to six week assignment or longer. Independent temporary workers don’t have employer-paid health insurance in most cases or other benefits like pensions and paid vacations or leave to care for home-based relatives.

 

A break-down of the temp workforce shows that 42 percent are age 16-24. One in three are under age 35. Sixty percent are female. Twenty-seven percent are in administrative support or managerial jobs. Twenty-three percent are in agricultural transport. Service industries employ 16 percent. About twenty percent of the workforce is temporary. Seventy-eight percent of temps say they work for additional income, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Seventy-six percent of temps work as a temp sometimes with the goal of finding permanent, full-time work.

 

Numerous free agents work temporary jobs as independents because they have disabilities. Some are based at home and need to work there. Yet, most temporary staffing service won’t hire people to work at home, and don’t deal with the homebound disabled, who must work through special agencies that find work for people with disabilities. The result is that 65 percent of people with disabilities can’t find work at all, either in the home or outside, permanent or temporary.

 

Free agents want to work for companies where no one has regular hours. Microsoft is one example. No one keeps track of hours, but everyone watches their own output. They are accountable to project teams. Employers move from one project to the next, taking their reputation. You’re only as good as your last project.

 

For free agents over age 60, their biggest fear is that employers believe it’s the young worker under age 25 who calls the shots. That’s true in the MTV business or in scriptwriting, but as baby boomers age, they will need to work far beyond the age of 60 to put food on the table even at a lower middle class level.

 

Free agents take the risk of independent temping because they believe they need to enjoy what they do. Hundreds of books hit the market in the late nineties on the subject of loving what you do and knowing who you are. Independent temps want to know how they focus their energy. That information is the key to finding clients and employers. “What are your assets?” asked temp independent, Anne Hart. “What’s unique about your data? What sets you apart from temp workers who are employed by staffing services? What’s your brand name? What about you speaks another language? Connection is your goal.”

 

Free agents have portfolio careers. They treat their jobs as they would treat their stock portfolio, with long term and short term work divisions seen as investments. The goal is not to put all your eggs in one basket. The free agent’s concept is that work doesn’t fit into eight hours, five days a week, and no one employer or staffing service owns you. The ideal is described by Charles Handy’s “The Age of Unreason.”

 

Being a free agent and independent temp means using contingent working to express the freedom of working. The benefits is “creative expression.” The reasons for temping independently is flexibility, travel, and the freedom to negotiate health insurance and benefits. You name your own payscale. You make more money if you have technical skills that are current. The reasons people temp is to explore different kinds of companies or work, for family care and time flexibility, and to travel.

 

Most independent temps find their jobs by taking paid internships and externships. For the worker over age 60, internships are harder to come by because they are competing with energetic students. However, their experience is a marketing tool. The older independent “free agent” temp finds work by being on the site with a laptop computer or other tool of the trade. Flexibility is important as is visibility, connections, and experience.

 

Independent temps can negotiate contracts for salary and benefits. They get medical benefits cheaper than temps who work for employers because the free agent can bargain with employers to negotiate benefits. There is a monthly  increase in salary of about $400 for technical temps if they know how to negotiate benefits, insurance, and salary directly with their client or employer.

 

  More bankruptcies are filed by senior citizen women working for someone else part time then by small business owners working for themselves. "About three million older women can't find work," said Senator William S. Cohen, "due to ageism‑‑discrimination against their age. And even when they do  find work, females earn less than males with the same education and experience." Cohen is a member of the Senate Select Committee on Aging.

 

Older males also have trouble finding work after retirement from the military or another job. Their military pensions are often subtracted from their new job salary.  Women's experience managing the home is totally discounted in the corporate world because it's unpaid, but full‑time volunteerism in an institution is valued.

 

Industry has spent over $30 billion on its own training programs across the nation each year since 1975. Currently, 55% of women between the ages of 59 and 65 are employed full‑time in the workforce.

 

The average older woman opening a home-based small business has been forced to look for a job after never having worked for pay outside the home. It's a whole new ballgame being 28 or 36 and loosing your husband then it is at 61 or 72, and having to find an income when some employers who don’t want a mother hen stereotype around because of how they relate to their own moms. So they stereotype you and perhaps see you as a bitter old lady instead of a smiling ageless person. They might even think of the slogan, ‘gray stay away.’ At 68, a woman is faced with at least 20 more vibrant years of good earning power. The best free agent independent temping work for seniors are those services that customize tangibles and intangibles for people.

                                                                                 

Charm school for  CEOs: Executive Presence School

 

Would you like to open a business as an executive presence coach and earn thousands of dollars a day based on research on the kind of impact you have when you stride into a meeting? A new career has sprung up, sometimes making use of the various schools of training in personality type. It's called charm school for CEOs. Employers interested in training newly promoted people being groomed for executive leadership are increasingly interested in having their employees trained in both how to use personality type to get people together for a common goal and in polishing the image or grooming newly promoted employees for that executive look.

 

Personality traits coaches who specialize in image-polishing for CEOs charge various amounts to restore what is missing in a newly promoted executive. You also may wish to check out the book:  Secrets of a CEO Coach: Your Personal Training Guide to Thinking Like a Leader and Acting Like a CEO.

 

If you become an "executive prescence-type coach," you could charge a fee for services agreed upon by you and your clients. Such CEO coaches are sent to charm school for polishing. Some coaches  do research on what changes bosses require. Check out the book mentioned above and read about executive presence. When you walk into a room, how do you broadcast/narrowcast to your viewers? What kind of an impact do you make on their senses and intuition? It's a collection of unconscious visual cues. Benton emphasizes that others must evaluate your executive presence.

 

You may think it's only about the fit, fabric, and feel of your clothing. It's the way your hair is trimmed and tinted. Is it a subtle shade of color--such as medium ash blonde, brownish black, or dark auburn as compared to flaming strawberry, plumwine black, or platinum? How do your clothes hang on your protruding tummy? Vertical or horizontal? How do you walk, shuffling, limping, hunched over, straight, stiff, angrily, or with animation? Are you wearing navy or charcoal or did you think black could be worn outside of funerals? Presence goes beyond image. It's polish and charm school.

 

The good news is that your shortcomings are fixable, and that's what employers pay an executive presence coach for.  The four other reasons include executive maturity. Benton defines it as the diplomacy to deal with people. Is your emotional quotient higher or lower than your boss's? How do you act if your boss is a perfectionist or bully? Executive maturity is about how to deal with people. Benton also lists team leadership. You learn how to manage upward. Then there's social ability. Your personality can tell you whether you're buttoned up or down, enough or too much. You'll learn to measure your social ability in concrete ways at charm school.

 

Most technology professionals have an image of intellectualizing their code and details instead of reaching outwardly to people to sell ideas. Selling intangible ideas takes training in developing intuition rather than parroting facts about technology or products. In order to de-geek technical professionals, charm school for executives shows them how to promote ideas to people by selling the sizzle, the idea rather than parroting the facts only in an intellectual way that puts people to sleep.

 

Personality-type coaches find that they can earn more money teaching not only personality type. Some train executives to be powerful leaders. Coaches may teach the power of personality and how to use it to get people to work together as a team toward common goals. Now personality coaches can move over into teaching executive presence at charm school.

 

Executive maturity coaches may use their understanding of personality type to learn image and executive maturity training. They can open executive maturity schools. Instead of being an image consultant or a personality type trainer, coaches can become executive maturity coaches. They can incorporate their skills in teaching emotional quotient training, social ability, or technical orientation and how to sell abstract ideas rather than concrete facts-- to executives whose bosses hired them for their intelligence quotient or sales ability.

 

Executive maturity training combines practical ways of selling ideas instead of intellectualizing facts with using personality type. The idea is to get very different people to work together toward common goals. What's added is training in executive maturity--polishing and charm-- to create executive image or presence. Executive image includes training in board presence, the way one walks, dresses, and speaks--from the low profile haircut to the correct jewelry. Some coaches include aromatherapy in the office. For example, a lemon-scented cologne in a boardroom makes a better image than a cinnamon and orange-scented restroom.

 

It's not only your image and dress or manor. Your office has to smell fresh, including the bathroom. According to Sacramento aromatherapist, A. Joan Levine, 57, lemon is in, cinnamon, jasmine, or rose is out for executives. Employers send their newly promoted executives to get personality type training or executive maturity clues if they see shortcomings in them. Most wonder what they are supposed to be learning before they come to class.

 

Bosses often feel like parents who have to tell their youngsters about the birds and the bees and can't communicate exactly what they are supposed to learn at executive maturity school. It's emotional quotient, personality type, executive presence, and image plus any list of areas where the bosses think their employees need improvement. Sometimes the executive maturity class has to change perfectionist or bully behavior in a manager or other executive.

 

The client may have a list drawn up by peers that may be totally different than the boss's list of what the executive needs to have improved at charm school. Benton emphasizes that the problem may be a lack of self-awareness. Sometimes an executive's shortcomings center on having a laid-back personality type that's always late for meetings or leaves work until the last minute and then rushes through to meet deadlines for the adrenaline rush that's addictive. 

 

Whether you go to a coach to learn about your personality type or to train for executive maturity, create a new image, or learn how high your emotional quotient is, you're going to learn more about how to be self-aware. Just leave your ego at home. Don't bring it to class or work. If it's absent, charm school will be great fun.                                                                                               

Using power in the workplace according to your preferences

 

Diversity now applies to personality type. Personality type classifying to create hardwired leadership is a new buzz word. Corporate trainers are unleashing the power of personality to turn you into a new millennium leader. People use power in different ways, according to their individual personality type.

 

Classic workplace struggles such as clashes between marketing and research groups or fights between visionary executives and their detail-oriented partners arise from personality type differences which are hardwired habits. Conflicts between people arise from different ways of receiving and responding to information.

 

The cure is to apply insights from the MBTI (Myers-Briggs Type Indicator), a personality classifier, to the workplace. Each year hundreds of books are published about gaining new perspectives on understanding workplace relationships by identifying and reducing conflict among co-workers, the team, and the organization. Books such as Work Out (Davies-Black Publishing), give you the tools to manage diversity in personality type. Personality type research helps you capitalize on the unique strengths of employees, according to their biologically-based personality type.

 

"Joining the Entrepreneurial Elite," according to author Isaachsen, " is a new book from Black-Davies that introduces you to four personality styles for business success focusing on why some entrepreneurs are born and others made, according to entrepreneurial styles. Some are action-oriented. Others good planners. Some calculate risks carefully. Others thrive on uncertainty."

 

Olaf Isachsen identifies four entrepreneurial styles--the Administrator, the Tactician, the Strategist, and the Idealist--based on the MBTI and the four temperaments of David Keirsey. Isachsen describes the styles and shows how each is most effective. "The goal is how to use personality to build on our particular gifts to create successful and satisfying entrepreneurial careers."

 

Organizations each have a character to which you can match your personality type. Employers need strategies to lead workers through transitions. New tools are in use globally for doing better business. The result is a flood of tools, books, and seminars on giving the corporate world clues for solving people problems at work by showing the different ways people receive and respond to information.

 

Those ways we respond, receive, and give out information depend upon the differences and similarities of our inborn personality type. Organizations such as the Association for Psychological Type and the Center for Applications of Psychological Type publish catalogs containing hundreds of books on how to use psychological type classifying, particularly one of the world's most popular personality type indicators the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)(tm) which has been translated into dozens of languages.


What's new is that the new buzz word and drive is to unleash the power of personality to create leaders for the next century. "Personality classifiers are largely based on the works of C.G. Jung, a psychotherapist who published his theory of eight types in 1923. Today type counseling has turned into a dynamic new look in the corporate and career arena. New buzz words appear every now and then.


Effective leadership through the study of habits is the new buzzphrase. Training corporate leaders in how to apply the results of personality type classifying is designed to gain visibility, credibility, insight, foresight, and hindsight through personality preference training.

 
Expertise is gained today by looking at real-life examples from the front lines of organizations, not solely at abstract theories of psychiatrists. What's new is the concrete real-life illustrations from organizations on how personality influences corporate decision making. People who train sales managers in corporate settings are using personality type to bring people together to work for a common goal. Personality type has practical applications outside academia.


Corporate leaders often want tools and step-by-step guidance, not abstract theories so they can evaluate their strengths, identify blind spots, and plan a course of action. The goal of personality type research today is to train people to master leadership competencies. Books such as Roger Pearman's I'm Not Crazy, I'm Just Not You, and Naomi Quenk's Beside Ourselves (Our Hidden Personality In Everyday Life) unravel the mystery of how and why people read and respond to the same situations so differently. Some people thrive on ambiguity, whereas others need clarity, definition, and planning.

 

Executive Maturity Training?

 

Would you like to open a business as an executive presence coach and earn thousands of dollars a day based on research on the kind of impact you have when you stride into a meeting? A new career has sprung up, sometimes making use of the various schools of training in personality type. It's called charm school for CEOs. Employers interested in training newly promoted people being groomed for executive leadership are increasingly interested in having their employees trained in both how to use personality type to get people together for a common goal and in polishing the image or grooming newly promoted employees for that executive look.

 

Personality type coaches who specialize in image-polishing for CEOs charge fees per day to restore what is missing in a newly promoted executive. You may wish to check out the book,  Secrets of a CEO Coach: Your Personal Training Guide to Thinking Like a Leader and Acting Like a CEO.

 

Coaches also can do research on what changes bosses require to have swagger. Some books talk about "executive presence" rather than the generalized term "swagger." The idea of presence for example, might be the ambiance of when you walk into a room, How do you broadcast yourself to your viewers? What kind of an impact do you make on their senses and intuition? It's a collection of unconscious visual cues. The key is that others must evaluate your swagger, appearance, impact, or presence. Is your presence perceived by others when you first walk into a room as entry level trainee or as an executive or CEO, whether your actual job description is one or the other?

 

You may think it's only about the fit, fabric, and feel of your clothing. It's the way your hair is trimmed and tinted. Is it a subtle shade of color--such as medium ash blonde, brownish black, or dark auburn as compared to flaming strawberry, plumwine black, or platinum? How do your clothes hang on your protruding tummy? Vertical or horizontal? How do you walk, shuffling, limping, hunched over, straight, stiff, angrily, or with animation? Are you wearing navy or charcoal or did you think black could be worn outside of funerals? Presence goes beyond image. It's polish and charm school. Is it really important or do people ignore the appearance, dress, hairstyle or neatness of someone walking into a room in the workplace?

 

The good news is that your shortcomings are fixable, and that's what employers pay an executive presence coach for.  The four other reasons include executive maturity. Benton defines it as the diplomacy to deal with people. Is your emotional quotient higher or lower than your boss's? How do you act if your boss is a perfectionist or bully? Executive maturity is about how to deal with people. Benton also lists team leadership. You learn how to manage upward. Then there's social ability. Your personality can tell you whether you're buttoned up or down, enough or too much. You'll learn to measure your social ability in concrete ways at charm school.

 

Most technology professionals have an image of intellectualizing their code and details instead of reaching outwardly to people to sell ideas. Selling intangible ideas takes training in developing intuition rather than parroting facts about technology or products. In order to de-geek technical professionals, charm school for executives shows them how to promote ideas to people by selling the sizzle, the idea rather than parroting the facts only in an intellectual way that puts people to sleep.

 

Personality-type coaches find that they can earn more money teaching not only personality type. Some train executives to be powerful leaders. Coaches may teach the power of personality and how to use it to get people to work together as a team toward common goals. Now personality coaches can move over into teaching executive presence at charm school.

 

Executive maturity coaches may use their understanding of personality type to learn image and executive maturity training. They can open executive maturity schools. Instead of being an image consultant or a personality type trainer, coaches can become executive maturity coaches. They can incorporate their skills in teaching emotional quotient training, social ability, or technical orientation and how to sell abstract ideas rather than concrete facts-- to executives whose bosses hired them for their intelligence quotient or sales ability.

 

Executive maturity training combines practical ways of selling ideas instead of intellectualizing facts with using personality type. The idea is to get very different people to work together toward common goals. What's added is training in executive maturity--polishing and charm-- to create executive image or presence. Executive image includes training in board presence, the way one walks, dresses, and speaks--from the low profile haircut to the correct jewelry. Some coaches include aromatherapy in the office. For example, a lemon-scented cologne in a boardroom makes a better image than a cinnamon and orange-scented restroom.

 

It's not only your image and dress or manor. Your office has to smell fresh, including the bathroom. For some the choice of the scent of lemon is in, cinnamon, jasmine, or rose is out for executives. Employers send their newly promoted executives to get personality type training or executive maturity clues if they see shortcomings in them. Most wonder what they are supposed to be learning before they come to class.

 

Bosses often feel like parents who have to tell their youngsters about the birds and the bees and can't communicate exactly what they are supposed to learn at executive maturity school. It's emotional quotient, personality type, executive presence, and image plus any list of areas where the bosses think their employees need improvement. Sometimes the executive maturity class has to change perfectionist or bully behavior in a manager or other executive.

 

The client may have a list drawn up by peers that may be totally different than the boss's list of what the executive needs to have improved at charm school. Benton emphasizes that the problem may be a lack of self-awareness. Sometimes an executive's shortcomings center on having a laid-back personality type that's always late for meetings or leaves work until the last minute and then rushes through to meet deadlines for the adrenaline rush that's addictive.  Whether you go to a coach to learn about your personality type or to train for executive maturity, create a new image, or learn how high your emotional quotient is, you're going to learn more about how to be self-aware. Just leave your ego at home. Don't bring it to class or work. If it's absent, charm school will be great fun.


The Temperament Institute in Southern California trains corporate leaders, trainers, and educators in using temperament in the corporate world and other areas of life. The Association for Psychological Type trains persons in the use of the MBTI in various settings, including the corporate world, training, and education. The Center for Psychological Type trains people in a wide range of uses of MBTI type including organizations, education, counseling, and career guidance.

 

Do people seek satisfaction for a core need, or sets of core needs every day. Do many employees  voice dissatisfaction? If so, you may wish to research whether employees might leave even after the company has increased pay or benefits in an effort to make them stay. What could be driving some employees away?

 

What are the underlying issues that some people are hoping to resolve and help them move on? It has been said that when it comes to character, personality, or likes and dislikes, people are different. Genes are different for various individuals. So is environment and their experiences in childhood. You might have a mismatch between an individual and the character of the corporation where they person is employed. People like to feel as comfortable as possible with their world of work.