When Lara Vandenberg launched Publicist earlier this year, things didn’t go as planned. She had returned to her native Australia to weather the coronavirus pandemic, and was working nights in order to collaborate with colleagues in New York. On top of that, she was sick with COVID herself.
But launch she did, and she has no 2020 regrets. On the contrary.
Vandenberg founded Publicist to connect marketing and PR people with work and project managers with talent. The idea was simple: Use a “curated” talent platform to automate a recruiting process that has historically been a word-of-mouth affair.
The COVID outbreak, awful as it has been, accelerated those plans. Industry layoffs in Q2 led to increased need for flexible marketing teams in Q3. And more marketing professionals, even those with jobs, sought out supplemental income.
“What we thought was going to happen in three or four years happened in three or four months,” she says.
Vandenberg is betting the shifting sands of talent will persist. For instance, she predicts the stigma associated with being a freelancer will fade over time.
“We are seeing these amazing contractors that want to be solopreneurs, they want to be their own bosses. I think we’re going to see a lot of them stay as freelancers … We’re seeing that talent and the future of work can be boundaryless. It’s almost like the world is flattening.”