Recently, I posted an announcement on Linkedin about a new position. A number of people saw the post and some reached out to me with some assumptions and others with some questions. Because of that, I’m writing this post to clarify what I’m up to and how this impacts my existing clients and projects.
For the sake of brevity, here’s the TL;DR highlights:
- I took a role as a Senior Brand Strategist with Sol Marketing, a Branding Agency in Austin, TX.
- I’m not moving to Texas (I like BBQ but not the heat).
- I am still running my own consulting practice.
- I am still running The Superhero Institute.
- I am still blogging and podcasting.
The remainder of this post provides some additional details about my new role, and gives a crystal clear picture about how I allocate my time to take such a significant position while still being able to continue my existing projects.
I try to be fully transparent about my career and I want to take this post as an opportunity to share how I’ve designed my work-life so that those who want to model any aspects of their own business after mine, have a clear map to follow. Additionally, I want to make sure that those who want to work with me or refer opportunities to me, understand what I offer and what my availability looks like.
The Linkedin Update
I take my Linkedin Profile seriously.
- I choose my headline carefully
- I write a comprehensive summary
- I fill out all of my job descriptions
- I curate my endorsements/skills
However, one thing I don’t typically do is “update my network” about changes to my profile.
Updating my network inevitably leads to a barrage of hollow I-just-pushed-the-button messages of “congratulations,” often from people I only vaguely remember connecting with 7 years ago. In most cases, I’m not interested in having an inbox full of messages because I decided to add a job description.
…but this one felt important
In November, Sol Marketing became a client of mine and we immediately jumped into the deep end together. I took on the role of Senior Brand Strategist. After only a few weeks, it became abundantly clear that it’s a great fit and there’s a lot of work for us to do together. We’re working out some of the details but suffice to say, this is going to be where I spend a large portion of my time. So after the weekend, I added the position to my Linkedin and checked the box to update my network because I want my network to know that if they need Brand work done, I’m more equipped than ever to help.
Spending Time in the Sun
I met the CEO of Sol Marketing, Deb Gabor back in 2016 when she appeared on my podcast Shareable. This was shortly after she released her first book Branding is Sex. We hit it off immediately. She’s brilliant and has a pace and energy that both matches and compliments my own.
Sol Marketing is a Brand and Marketing powerhouse headquartered in Austin, TX. Deb has authored two books on Brand—both of which you should read—and has successfully established Sol as the preeminent Branding agency for those who want to build an Authority / Thought Leadership platform, and organizations that want to unlock the secret to Irrational Loyalty (the title of her second book).
My role on the Sol Marketing team will be to lead Brand Strategy, as well as the subsequent Content and Promotion Strategies that bring the Brand to life in the world. I will be working directly with Sol Clients and working with a team of truly brilliant strategists and creatives.
Did Jeff just get a job?
The short answer is: Yes and No.
Yes, I am working extensively with Sol Marketing, but no, it’s not my full-time job.
- I am still 100% all-in on my work as a consultant, strategist, speaker and trainer. I have several consulting clients that I will continue working with, and I remain open for speaking and training opportunities.
- I am still 100% all-in on the Superhero Institute, and everything that entails including coaching, the weekly hangout, and various content projects. I also have several coaching clients that I will continue working with.
- I am still 100% all-in on my podcasts: Shareable, Rogue, and Heroic Council
- I am still 100% all-in on this blog.
The only thing that has changed is that I am now (also) 100% all-in as Senior Brand Strategist for Sol Marketing leading a team of world-class branding experts and working with an extensive line-up of incredible companies.
“But Jeff…that math doesn’t make sense.”
If you’re wondering how I can be 100% all-in on so many things, I’ll explain.
My default setting is that: Whatever I do, I go full speed and I don’t hold back.
During the windows of time I have set aside for any of my clients, that is where my full attention is. Aside from family, nothing else in the world is important during that time, I am 100% all-in. The same is true for any of my various projects, or even my weekly planning.
Here’s How It Works
I have made the conscious choice that instead of spreading myself thin, I will be selective about where I spend my time, but go much deeper on those activities.
My schedule is very deliberately and methodically designed, and it’s mathematically-driven.
I adhere to strict block scheduling designed entirely around my priorities. I have a set amount of time that I have decided to work each week, and that creates the limitations that I must operate within.
Over the last year, I’ve been refining a schedule where I’m able to make everything fit including all of my clients, my content projects, time for email, time for business development, time for phone calls, and even exercise at the gym twice per week. I should also mention that I do this working a 4-day week.
- Mondays are for planning and content production. I spend the first half of my day planning out my week, and the second half creating content like blogs, podcasts, and videos, as well as playbooks, online courses, and email sequences.
- Tuesday – Thursday, are my days for billable work. I have 9 two-hour blocks that are reserved exclusively for client work (strategy/consulting, coaching, speaking, etc).
- Fridays, I’m off from work to watch my daughter.
I will occasionally take a client call on a Monday or Friday, but typically, I’ve worked it out to consolidate clients interactions into that 3-day window.
To achieve this, I had to combine (1) well thought-out and deliberate planning supported by (2) a variety of tools, technologies and systems, built upon (3) strong frameworks and methodologies concerning time management, profitability, and a balanced work-life flow, and all directed toward (4) my purpose.
How I Can Help
I have never felt more empowered to help people in my entire career.
Through Sol Marketing, we can now transform you into an Authority via the Authority Lab, or we can position your Brand in the market to drive Irrational Loyalty.
Through my own Consulting, Speaking and Training, I can help growing companies to analyze and build their Brand, Leadership, Culture, Marketing and Sales so they can make a heroic difference in the world.
Through the Superhero Institute, I can help small businesses, freelancers, and entrepreneurs to develop the skills they need to become superhumans capable of growing their businesses, living an extraordinary life, and changing the lives of everyone they touch.
Through my blog, podcast and other content projects, I give away everything I know in hopes of giving you the tools to change the world even if you can’t pay me for it.
If you want to talk about any of this, contact me here.
Got a question? Throw it in the comments.