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RE: Reemergence

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Not looking back, I wish you all the best for the future.  I escaped a
similar fate a decade or so ago in government restructuring.  (Privatisation
of the 'Public Works Department'.)  Some of my friends were not so
fortunate.  So perhaps I have some understanding of your feelings.

Observing the reactions of some of my peers who were 'released' it is very
important to treat the situation as an opportunity and to 'get stuck in' now
for future prospects.  No holidays or overseas trips to get over it, act
now!  A busy mind is important. Seizing opportunities is important.

And,  I 'retired' from the company last year.  I have established a
specialist seismic engineering consultancy. I am fortunate to have planned
to establish a good client base in anticipation, so the business
development/marketing activities have not been so demanding.

I share some of the year's experiences.  While these are New Zealand
experiences I am sure that they are universal:
-  The overhead time in setting up the consultancy was more than expected.
Registering the company, professional liability and other insurance, setting
up a home office, communications, establishing the accounting books,
implementing a time writing system, expanding the computer setup,  securing
the computer system with backup, management and antivirus systems (difficult
to do without it in business) all took consideration and time.
-  Then just running the business.  The ongoing activities as above.
Together with technical reading etc, a 70% fee charging utilisation is good
going.  Monthly invoicing is essential for income!!
-  One needs advice on taxation and other legislative issues.
-  There were previously comments on PI insurance on this listserver.
Apparently in the US having PI insurance just raises the probability of
court action against one?  This needs serious consideration.
-  The work discipline is probably more onerous.  There is current
discussion on time and delivery pressures, and demands of the employer.  As
an individual consultant this does not change.  The client still has demands
and timelines.
-  Working from home and 'telecommuting' is not as straight forward as it
sounds.  Client and peer group meetings can be a significant time demand.
While electronic communications are very good,  it is often important to
meet 'eye to eye' to resolve matters and to make good progress.  And a
significant factor is that one NEEDS to get out and mix with clients and
peers to really keep in touch and to keep up with developments.  I have
found this to be important.

On the other hand one does have some flexibility to arrange and balance
income, output timelines, and personal time.  Weekend work can mean
social/leisure time midweek for special occasions.  And the income can be

Bill,  I trust that this is some help and support for you.

Regards,  Bruce S.

Any attachments to this email have been checked using Norton Antivirus
definitions dated 25/05/2000.

Bruce Shephard
Seismic Consultants Ltd
23 Martin Grove, Normandale, LOWER HUTT
Telephone:  +64 4  586 36 52
Cellphone:  (025)  300 438
Facsimile:  +64 4  586 36 56
E-mail:  seismic.consultants(--nospam--at)

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Bill Polhemus [mailto:bpolhem(--nospam--at)]
> Sent: Friday, 26 May 2000 14:55
> To: seaint(--nospam--at)
> Subject: Reemergence
> Hello, all.
> I have unsubscribed from my old "work" email address, and am now
> subscribed from home.
> REASON: I lost my job yesterday. Call it a reduction in force.
> Call it (also) a cold glass of water in the face of my pretend
> reality where you just keep gaining, in turn, more salary and
> more "security" until you attain nirvana, in the business world of
> consulting engineering.
> So, I'm not an employee of anyone at this time. Well, that's not
> exactly true: I intend to be employed by MYSELF. From this day
> forward, come what may (and I shudder to think what MAY), I am a
> free agent, a freelancer, a self-employed professional.