Remote first. Employees moved all over the country and the world for a new opportunity. That’s not happening anymore. I’ve built my entire company with a remote first attitude, not caring where anyone is specifically located. What’s important is they are qualified to do the job and a fit for what the company needs. It’s less important where they’re located, and this will become even less important as we adopt new collaboration and communication tools.

When it comes to designing the future of work, one size fits none. Discovering success isn’t about a hybrid model or offering remote work options. Individuals and organizations are looking for more freedom. The freedom to choose the work model that makes the most sense. The freedom to choose their own values. And the freedom to pursue what matters most. We reached out to successful leaders and thought leaders across all industries to glean their insights and predictions about how to create a future that works.

As a part of our interview series called “How Employers and Employees are Reworking Work Together,” we had the pleasure to interview Bradley Jacobs.

Bradley Jacobs is the founder and CEO of Mylance, an end-to-end software platform for self-employed individuals and budding entrepreneurs to live a flexible, fulfilling work-life. He also practices what he preaches by continuing as a part-time consultant for growth-stage companies looking to launch and scale their businesses.

In early 2020, he founded Mylance to help professionals monetize their knowledge in a part-time capacity, being expert consultants for growing companies.

Thank you for making time to visit with us about the topic of our time. Our readers would like to get to know you a bit better. Can you please tell us about one or two life experiences that most shaped who you are today.

After I graduated from Duke with a degree in Mechanical Engineering, I worked at a boutique management consulting firm. While I learned a lot, I was underwhelmed with the pace and type of work. In 2014, I decided to join what was then a fast growing but little known company called Uber. There I worked in Operations where I managed 9 markets in the North Carolinas for Uber Rides, launched Uber Eats in both Miami and Milan, and then moved to San Francisco where I launched and scaled Uber Freight in the US to a $1B valuation in two years.

While I was having a lot of success at Uber, I was ready to go out on my own. So, I quit. And found myself consulting independently, averaging $25k/ month in 25 hours a week across a dozen clients in 2 years mostly for Seed and Series A companies helping them launch and scale their marketplaces.

My experience as an independent consultant changed everything for me. I realized what work could look like. I didn’t need an employer to make good money. In fact, I made way more on my own. And for the organizations I contracted, they benefited immensely. I brought expertise that helped them avoid mistakes and accelerate their growth. I’d been at organizations and executed on similar projects, so I brought a unique insight that would be hard to find elsewhere.

The entire experience on my own was a huge win all around, and it has profoundly changed the way I look at work.

So I started Mylance to enable and empower more people to monetize their knowledge, work for themselves, and work part-time with multiple sources of income. I’d always been entrepreneurial, I became really passionate about flexible, fulfilling work, I love helping others, and after consulting myself, I saw a huge, growing market with massive problems to be solved.

Let’s zoom out. What do you predict will be the same about work, the workforce and the workplace 10–15 years from now? What do you predict will be different?

The workplace has changed a ton in the last 3 years alone. Workforces are remote and global. Workforces are made up of fractional and full-time. Companies are wrangling with the challenge of paying talent across the world with different currencies and costs of living.

One thing I expect to stay the same: companies will need employees. Employees aren’t going anywhere, and that’s because they pick up the tasks that otherwise might fall through the cracks. They don’t simply get a job done. They’re loyal to a company. They’re available for fire drills. They pick up mistakes that would be missed otherwise. Things go wrong in an organization all the time and the employees are the ones likely to pick up the slack.

What will be different: A lot.

First, employees in full-time offices are mostly a thing of the past. Talent wants to work remotely and companies are having to adapt. It will matter a lot less where you live, and your expertise will matter a lot more.

Further, a much larger percentage of the workforce will be fractional. Companies will be made up of at least half fractional talent.

Entirely different tools will be used to measure work in organizations, made necessary by the use of fractional talent. Managers have an entirely different challenge about managing a half-fractional workforce. 401ks, health insurance, and general benefits will overhaul as well and become disentangled from the employer. The power will be with the individual. Individuals make companies, and individuals are getting their way.

And lastly, AI will replace more talent from the workforce (we’ve just seen what’s possible with Open AI’s ChatGPT) and raise the bar for other roles. If AI can write a decent blog article, then the quality of a company’s blog needs to stand out, otherwise it will just be noise in the system.

What advice would you offer to employers who want to future-proof their organizations?

Nothing can fully future-proof can organization. Companies need to constantly be innovating and disrupting themselves to have long term longevity.

However, the most important future proofing tactic will be how organizations measure the output of an individual, and what work needs to get done to drive the business forward. Managers will struggle even more to determine when and how much people are working, thus they’ll need to measure performance purely by business impact, without visually seeing their employees on a regular basis.

The traditional metrics need to be replaced with ones that more accurately reflect efficiency and productivity that relates directly to the top and bottom lines.

What do you predict will be the biggest gaps between what employers are willing to offer and what employees expect as we move forward? And what strategies would you offer about how to reconcile those gaps?

Many employers will continue to want their employees to be in or near an office. They’ll want employees to go “above and beyond” like they have in the past, and they’ll expect their full focus.

Employees, on the other hand, want independence, ownership, and to experience multiple sources of income to support their needs. With multiple sources of income, by definition a company will not get the full focus of someone’s attention.

To reconcile the gaps, employers can afford as much flexibility as possible. Let employees work when and where they want. Let them dictate their own hours and what days they can take off. Let them have ownership over their work. Make them feel valued for their contributions. Promote them and give them substantial pay raises when they outperform. The more employers can mimic a feeling of empowerment and ownership, the more likely they are to retain employees for the long haul.

We simultaneously joined a global experiment together last year called “Working From Home.” How will this experience influence the future of work?

When employees worked from home, they saw they could get more done in less time by not being in the office. Further, they saw they didn’t need to be in an office at all! And a lot of them loved it. So much so that they’re willing to quit or get fired in order to maintain the flexibility of working from wherever they want.

With that said, many employers saw a decrease in productivity and want to resume the normal office culture. This causes an obvious conflict, with the employees winning out. There are more ways to earn an income than ever before with creator and social tools online, and thus the power has moved and will continue to move towards the individual.

We’ve all read the headlines about how the pandemic reshaped the workforce. What societal changes do you foresee as necessary to support a future of work that works for everyone?

Traditional employer benefits will be disentangled. Right now, employers provide a backbone for an individual’s life including saving for retirement and health insurance. As more people work for themselves, there will be more solutions that aren’t tied to your employer. As an example, there will be more accessible and affordable healthcare options. There will be better options to save for retirement and get PTO. Further, there will be platforms that help people run businesses of their own by monetizing their experiences and skillsets like Mylance.

What is your greatest source of optimism about the future of work?

I am so excited for individuals to take control, and choose work that they really love. I believe many get fulfillment out of helping others, and doing so in a way that helps them support their families will benefit society as a whole. The current belief by many seems to be they need a W2 job to put food on the table reliably. And that belief will be shattered as more and more ways to monetize your value-add become readily accessible.

Our collective mental health and wellbeing are now considered collateral as we consider the future of work. What innovative strategies do you see employers offering to help improve and optimize their employee’s mental health and wellbeing?

As the workforce becomes more remote, we’re completely losing the camaraderie that often exists within an office. Many times, a new working professional has their first friend group as their coworkers. Companies have set start-dates for new employees to start in a cohort so they go through training together, bond together, and help each other through challenges. With the move to more remote work, this social bond will be harder to come by, and employers need to support their employees in other ways. This will mean both inside and outside of work. Inside work, companies can create social environments (e.g., clubs or teams) that encourage a social connection. Outside of work, this falls more on the burden of the employee to make friends outside of the office.

For talent that is part-time, employers need to offer paid time off. Because consultants usually bill by the project or the month, there’s no time set aside for time off or vacations. Further, because freelance workers generally feel income instability, it can be even harder to take time off from work, feeling like they need to capitalize on every opportunity. There could be some really interesting solutions to this problem, but it would be great in the meantime if companies could pay their contractors for time off as well.

It seems like there’s a new headline every day. ‘The Great Resignation’. ‘The Great Reconfiguration’. And now the ‘Great Reevaluation’. What are the most important messages leaders need to hear from these headlines? How do company cultures need to evolve?

Companies need to treat their talent in a completely different way. As I stated earlier, I believe the power has headed back to the individual, and likely for good. Given this, leaders need to realize their relationship with their talent has changed. Talent isn’t going to look at their company like a “family” anymore. Individuals are taking control of their work, are following their passions, and have more choice than ever. Leaders need to take this into account when managing their employees by giving them growth opportunities, interesting projects, and providing transparency around job expectations.

Let’s get more specific. What are your “Top 5 Trends To Track In the Future of Work?”

  1. Talent wants to work for themselves, and contract with companies. After I left my corporate job at Uber, I worked part-time for a Series A self-driving company as their Head of Operations. In 25 hours per week, I managed the team, and helped them launch a food delivery marketplace. Normally this would require a full-time role. But I convinced them to let me do it part-time, and it worked out very well for both parties. More and more individuals want to work for themselves, and lend their experience to companies part-time
  2. Remote first. Employees moved all over the country and the world for a new opportunity. That’s not happening anymore. I’ve built my entire company with a remote first attitude, not caring where anyone is specifically located. What’s important is they are qualified to do the job and a fit for what the company needs. It’s less important where they’re located, and this will become even less important as we adopt new collaboration and communication tools.
  3. Geographically dispersed. Companies can easily access talent across the globe, changing how companies are run, how much payroll costs, and what tools are required to stay connected. A top tier developer in the United States might cost a company $350k / year where the same quality of developer is available for $85k in Latin America or Asia simply due to the cost of living and the difference in currencies. Many start-ups I’ve advised have overseas developers, and are more than satisfied with the quality of the work.
  4. The bar for talent gets higher. The above geography assertion has implications for how talent differentiates itself. If a company can now easily find a great developer in Latin America for 1/4th the price, why would they pay so much more for a developer in the United States? For a top US employee to command the kind of money they’re used to, they’ll need to showcase the value and output of their work that much more clearly. Their proximity will be less relevant as time goes on. As an example, I don’t have any of our developers in the United States, frankly don’t ever plan to, and our quality is incredibly high.
  5. Subject matter experts at your fingertips. In our current day, managers often go to their network to find an expert on a topic. Or they “ask around.” As we evolve, experts will easily be accessible for whatever problems you have. This will make company building easier for those who choose to take advantage. As an example. I can go to Upwork today to find a Zapier <> Webflow specialist as opposed to trying to train one of my existing employees or spending time learning it myself.

I keep quotes on my desk and on scraps of paper to stay inspired. What’s your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? And how has this quote shaped your perspective?

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” — Theodore Roosevelt

To me, this quote captures so much of what it means to be part of something special. It’s about trying hard, pushing the needle, building, failing, learning, and growing. It’s inspired me to be an entrepreneur and a business owner. Knowing it’s about the journey and the process so much more than any destination.

We are very blessed that some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US, with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch, and why? He, she, or they might just see this if we tag them.

I’d love to have a private lunch with Sara Blakely, the founder of Spanx. Sara built Spanx to be a $1B+ company with no outside funding, and as a solo founder. She shared insights into what helped make her successful, including in her upbringing where her father encouraged her to try and fail. And he in fact celebrated her “failures.” So when she went out to build her company and got told “no” by over 100 manufacturers, she wasn’t deterred. What she’s built for herself is incredible and how she’s empowered female entrepreneurs is incredible. I’d love to get her take on bootstrapping a billion dollar business with $0 in funding

Our readers often like to continue the conversation with our featured interviewees. How can they best connect with you and stay current on what you’re discovering?

I frequently write my insights and stories on LinkedIn. They can follow me at For anyone interested in working for themselves as a expert, they can check out Mylance at

Thank you for sharing your insights and predictions. We appreciate the gift of your time and wish you continued success and good health.