With transformation still the most sought after requirement across industries, James talks about using independent talent to provide the expertise, tools, and initiative required to align on a shared vision of the future and mobilise the business to achieve it.
Q. When you’re at a networking event, how do you describe your independent career status, and where you focus your work?
I generally focus on developing growth strategies, improving marketing fundamentals and executing insights research, for a range of large to medium sized companies or PE-backed portfolio companies.
Q. What are the specific benefits that you, as an independent, offer to the operating teams/portfolio company leadership? How do you explain the value your expertise brings?
I think independents bring both a set of fresh eyes to the situation as well as the expertise they have from past work to shed light on new insights. Additionally, we are often more flexible and nimble than working with full-size firms, but can still leverage other independents to staff-up to meet the need.
Q. Why do you think there is increasing demand for independent expertise with PE operating teams?
I think there's a unique opportunity to pull in talent situationally - whether for a very specific topic/issue the operating team is facing and/or to pull in specific industry expertise.
Q. Describe a recent or successful assignment in terms of scope, duration and any particular highlights in the outcomes.
Recently I completed a multi-week project with Talmix where I worked with the PE firm and portco leadership to assess their marketing end-to-end. The focus was a series of three workshops to review the consumer target, the marketing plan and the tactics and to develop a brand positioning and in parallel to profile "success stories" in adjacent categories to help them understand "how high is up." The result was a stronger sense of confidence in what direction the company could take through the benchmarking.
Q. What advice would you give to anyone about to embark on an independent career as to how they can provide the best results for a client, while fulfilling their own career path?
The most important thing is to be crystal clear with the client on what the objective of the work is and what the desired outcome or how it will be used is.Then to really focus on delivering against that and ensure at check-ins the work is designed against that.
Talmix has outstanding transformation talent on its network globally, able to design, manage and implement programmes at functional and cross-function levels to deliver on the most taxing of requirements. If you'd like to find talent like James, then post a project today, or talk to us about building talent pools of transformation talent to address all your portfolio requirements.