Know your audience

The competition for resources is getting quite tough throughout the Puget Sound. Prices across the board are going up – home values, property taxes, the cost of doing business, even the price of a burrito. So we decided, last May, to totally uproot our lives in Seattle, and move to the Willamette Valley. And since getting down here in November, I have had to really readjust my expectations. Money is worth a lot more here (great!) but the quality of what you get for it is not always what I have come to expect. And the reality of that disconnect […]

March 29th, 2017|Consulting, Life Story, Rant, Willamette Valley Life|

Mighty Micros!

No – I’m not blogging about tiny toys. I’m talking about MICROBUSINESS or micropreneurism or solo professions or whatever you want to call them. I read an interesting fact sheet (from 2013, but still relevant!) that said that in the US, there are 22 MILLION small business owners who are just themselves – self employed with no employees – who contribute more than a TRILLION dollars of economic activity. Now, if we do a straight arithmetic average, that means that each of these micropreneurs is making about $45,000. Not a great dollar figure, but not too bad either.

But – only one out of […]

May 3rd, 2016|Consulting, Microbusiness|

Culture isn’t the culprit….

I was at a Barnes & Noble recently and I saw a Harvard Business Review, prominently displayed near the checkout. Whether or not I think it’s appropriate that the endcap had HBR featured alongside Playboy and Seattle Met isn’t particularly important (I don’t), but this cover caught my eye and made me SO MAD that I had to shell out $17 to buy it.

IMAG0210I was mad because of course you can fix culture. You can also break culture. Either way, culture is a changeable, “fixable,” known quality of any business. So I read the article, […]

April 13th, 2016|Consulting, Rant|

Collaborative vs Authoritative Consulting

Not as exciting as Batman v Superman, but still an important differentiator.

Collaborative consulting is a partnership where the consultant works with the client throughout the planning, change management, and implementation stages of an engagement.

Authoritative consulting is a relationship where the client hires the consultant to come in and provide direction and control over a project, without any “boots-on-the-ground” work.

Both types of consulting have their place. For example, auditing should maintain the distance inherent in authoritative consulting, and the early parts of many engagements have elements of authoritative consulting. But in case you wondered, Yockey Jones works almost wholly in the COLLABORATIVE space. Here are […]

April 5th, 2016|Consulting, Free Advice|


Recently, I was asked to consult for a non-profit agency who are planning an office move. Now, way back when I was a wee lass (before the internet!), I worked for an office furniture design house. I took on my very first project management role there, managing a move for a large corporation and interfacing with the design team. At that point, I was in way over my head, but 20+ years later, I have project managed many moves and wanted to share some expertise with you.

Attached to this blog post is a checklist that is appropriate for a small […]

February 16th, 2016|Consulting, Free Advice, Non-profits|

Starting Your New Year Right!

Happy New Year!

As we embark on the first quarter of 2016, it’s a great time to make sure your business is set up for success in the coming months. I often counsel a quarterly business check-up for people to make sure that they are on track for their larger strategic goals. Quarters are perfect units of time – long enough to get things done, but not too long to shift gears if things aren’t working properly.

Balanced Scorecards are a popular way to go about this – but they may be too complex for your needs. I know that for myself, […]

January 4th, 2016|Consulting, Free Advice|

Get out of your own way!

It’s a tried & true cliche – the first step to success is getting out of your own way. And there are THOUSANDS of self-help books on Amazon. So I’m just adding my own two cents to the dialogue of how you can do it.

For many of the businesses that I work with, the major obstacle that they face is their own talent. I see this behavior frequently – they are amazing architects, or designers, or lawyers. And that’s all well and good, but it’s not enough to make their entrepreneurship successful. If it were, […]

October 13th, 2015|Consulting|

Straight Dope

People in Seattle like to talk about pot. All the time. Whether it’s discussing what strains they like or debating our understanding of the current laws and various loopholes, the chronic seems to be a chronic topic of conversation around these parts.

I have a fairly informed take on the business side of cannabusiness. (For those out of the loop, “cannabusinesss” is the catch-all term for the business of all cannabis products and services – medical marijuana, recreational, retail, production, processing, edibles, etc.)  I was involved in managing a medical cooperative grow (totally legal) prior to and during the transition in […]

August 25th, 2015|Cannabusiness, Consulting|

It’s a Family Affair

Disclaimer: I am not currently in a family business. I used to be, but I’m not now. Sure, I ask my husband to consult when I’m working with clients in either the cannabis or culinary spaces. And sure, my mother provides incredible insights when I am working with boards or with educational institutions. But part of growing a family business is including a long-term sustainability provision. And my business is not sustainable over the long haul.

When I say “sustainability” here, I’m not talking about ecological sustainability or ethical consumerism. I’m talking about the scientific understanding of sustainability: the ability to continue indefinitely. […]

August 15th, 2015|Consulting, Family Business, Free Advice|

Knowing when to say when

When I enter into a contract with a client, much of the language included deals with their responsibilities to the project we’re undertaking. In the business of consulting, that is often not the case – consultants are hired to come in and give the business owner or manager a to-do list and then they leave, not caring whether the to-dos have been done.

The approach that YJC takes is different – we address each consulting relationship as a temporary partnership – I may know how to get things done, but both parties have responsibilities to each other to ensure accountability and […]

July 13th, 2015|Consulting|