I’m torn. Recently I’ve been providing freelance consulting to a client on a big project. Huge, actually. My original role was to link marketing to production reality. Analytics. Metrics. Best practices. Meeting. Meeting. Meeting. Listening. Advising.

Now the client wants me for a permanent role with the company and they’re upping the incentive ante.

Up to this point I was hoping that this client would become the cornerstone of my independent consulting business. I was banking on a continual relationship where I would enable reality and they would, in turn, give me enough pocket change to foot the mortgage. With money worries taken care of and time gained, I could help my existing clients grow while attracting new ones in a deliberate, methodical, secure way of building my own brand.

But since the client wants me full-time I feel I can’t possibly continue my outside work to the satisfaction of even my existing clients…never mind trying to court new customers.

This weekend I am focusing on suggesting to this client a robust, turn-key solution to their CMS needs. I volunteered to produce a one-page overview of a template-based CMS solution. I simply started by asking myself “What do you look for in a CMS?”. Thanks to the Net (Google blame), I got little more the 50,000 foot views. But luckily I uncovered a CMS solutions company that has been “getting it” for many years now. In fact, I read one of their white papers this morning dated several years ago (eons in Net life) that still holds relevant and true today. They think in the familiar and rightfully boast ease. All I have to do now is to take the white paper they produced and boil it down to a synopsis. Consulting simplified. Let’s move on.

And here’s where I get stuck. Why would I need to stick around for production? If I’ve fully enabled the client, what value do I produce over time if I’m under employment lock-and-key? I should be instead focusing six months down the road asking myself and them “What else can I do for you?”. I can’t seem to marry that notion to a full-time job. It screams consulting.

Anyone else been through this?