Over the past 10 years, I have had the privilege of knowing and working with some awesome people. Some have successfully started a consulting business, others got started but had to return to the workforce as their business entered difficult times. In either case, you have to applaud people who follow their dreams.
If you are starting a business, congratulations. You are one of the few. The brave. Someone that wants to make a difference. Let’s get you to the point though, where you join the elite, someone who not only successfully started a business, but also someone who was able to make a living at it.
First of all, do your homework. Here are two outstanding books on starting a consulting business.
- Getting Started in Consulting by Alan Weiss
- The Business of Consulting: The Basics and Beyond by Elaine Biech
Secondly, assess your strengths and weaknesses. From my observations, most consultants struggle in the area of marketing and sales. Most consultants are proficient at what they do but they don’t know how to sell. In order to succeed, you are going to have to learn how to market and sell yourself. I’m not talking about your 30 second elevator speech, creating a website or developing your social network. These are all important, but, at some point you are going to have to close a sale. After building your business plan, ensure you get some help in developing your sales technique.
Here are some other things to consider before starting a consulting business:
- Is your product or service relevant?
- Is it the right time to start a business?
- Can you live with minimum income for at least 3 years?
- What is your target market?
- What are the demographics in your area for your target market?
- Do you have access to capital if you require seed money?
- Is your family supportive of your endeavor?
- Did you bounce your ideas off three trusted advisers? What did they say?
There are two blogs that I often visit that give me ideas about business and marketing.
All the best!
All the time!
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