Jane Portman began her entrepreneurial journey as a freelance designer on oDesk (which is now called Upwork). She struggled to find good clients who were willing to pay reasonable rates for her services.
Fast forward a few short years, Jane is now a household name in the user experience industry. She has written several books and has an entire menu of productized consulting offerings that help software companies design better apps.
In this interview, we’re going to dig into Jane’s journey from unknown freelancer in “middle of nowhere” Russia to sought after user experience author, speaker and consultant.
- How Jane moved from freelancing on oDesk (now Upwork) to creating her own consulting firm (03:30)
- How writing a book fit into Jane’s products and services mix (06:07)
- How promoting her book boosted her authority (06:56)
- Jane’s authority-building journey (08:02)
- How Jane collaborated with Invision to write her second book (10:27)
- How Jane turned freelance work into a productized service and found the right clients (11:15)
- What Jane did to become a recognized name in the user experience industry (14:05)
- How Jane productized her service to prevent burnout and provide more value to her clients (15:12)
- How to balance products and consulting services (17:00)
- Building an influence sphere: Where do most clients come from? (18:58)
- Balancing lifestyle with business (20:00)
- No fixed deadlines – control your time (21:08)
- How important your website is as a user interface for your clients (23:23)
- Charging for your consultations (25:11)
- Creating useful content to engage your website visitors (26:43)
- Which media – articles, videos, or podcasts? (28:25)
- Jane’s podcast journey from start to monetizing content (29:45)
- Jane’s Website: UI Breakfast
- Jane’s Book: Use FORECAST39 to get 39% off any book package
- Patrick McKenzie: How I went from $100-an-hour programming to $X0,000-a-week consulting