Many people dream about starting their own business, but many do not know where to begin. When it comes to consulting, many people believe that it is a simple as giving someone your advice on a particular cause or issue, but sometimes this is not always the case.
Building your own consulting firm may seem simple and glamorous at first, but there are a few things that you may want to consider before changing career paths or engaging in a new business endeavor.
As a business consultant myself, I do in fact encourage others to enter the field however, I believe that people need to know what they’re about to encounter before getting started.
You’re Selling Yourself
It may be tough to think that you are selling yourself when conducting business, but in all actuality you are. With consulting, you are selling your expertise in a given industry and people need to find you credible in order to “purchase” your service.
In order to sell yourself when choosing to start a consulting firm, here are a few things that you must be prepared to do:
- Dress for success: The key here is to look as good (if not better) as the services that you are providing to customers.
- Be trustworthy: Don’t tell people what they want to hear, be honest in each customer encounters and state the facts.
- Give what you promise: this also ties into being trustworthy and proving your worth when dealing with customers. You never want people to feel as if you are unreliable and that you don’t know your stuff.
You’re Going to Face Disappointment
When trying to start any business, there are going to be minor setbacks and obstacles. Don’t sell yourself short by thinking that everything is going to be smooth sailing. Instead, devise a plan that will prepare you for the “worst case scenarios” and act accordingly.
You May Not be Charging Enough
Out of all of my years in the consulting industry, the biggest mistake that I see newly defined consultants make is their lack of knowledge when accurately charging for their services and fees.
It is important to your client that they are getting a return on their investment, so this should be important to you, as well. If you can prove your ROI, you’ve got leeway to charge a healthy percentage of the client’s profit over time.
Remember, if you’re expensive, then you are more than likely to attract the types of clients who will pay more.