One of the first questions you should ask a business
consultant before you hire them is what type of
business experience they had before they became a
You want to be sure that they know exactly what is
involved with business before you hire them, because
it will make you feel more comfortable that they are
able to help you.
You want to be certain that the person is sensible
when it comes to the bottom line, that they are going
to be able to help you achieve the types of results
that you are looking for, and that they will be able
to work efficiently but quickly.
Ideally, the consultant has experience as a turnaround
specialist for a corporation, or they were a chief
That way the chances are good that they know about the
need for quick results, know how to deal with cost
control, and has come under high pressure scrutiny.
If you hire someone that has this type of experience,
you are going to be making a great decision with your
They have the same types of goals and attributes that
are important to you, and they will help you to get
your company in the direction that it should go.
Even though most people who are interviewing business
consultants may not think about this, it is something
that should be a part of your interview.
The answer to this all important question will help
you to know if the person is the type of consultant
that you are looking for.
You may not realize it but you might have the
potential to become a business consultant. You don’t
believe me? Search within yourself. What is the thing
you are most passionate about? What is that thing that
you do best? Once you have determined what that is,
ask whether there are people who might need some
assistance in that area. Now, can you help them? Of
course, you can! You are an expert on it! So why not
do it as a business? Earn money helping others with
something you know and do best-and that is business
You can start small. Do it in the comfort of your home
as a freelance consultant. There are a lot of
organizations and executives out there who are in need
of expert consultants. Believe me, with a little fine
tuning, you can become a high-paid advisor. So what do
you need to do?
Well, as I have said earlier, you have to determine
your area of expertise first. Are you an accountant?
Do you have the required certification to claim that
you are an expert in your field? If you don’t, you
must secure that first. An expert without credentials
is just another person next-door, who is ambitioning
to be an expert. People believe in the written word,
so you have to have that. However, there are also
professions or areas of expertise that doesn’t require
certificates like fund-raising consultants. Expertise
on the likes of this area only needs experience.
However, you have to have vast experience in the field
you are planning to advise on.
Second, your office. Since you are starting small,
your first office can be your bedroom, or your study
room, if you have one. All you need is a table and
chair, an internet connection and a telephone line,
and voila! You are almost ready to start your
consulting business. Almost, because you have to
understand that though you are starting small, of
course, you are also looking to becoming big someday.
So you have to be organized. Consultants are advising
on management and that includes time and things
management. You have to practice what you are
Third, set your goals and limitations. Why
limitations? You are only starting your business, so
don’t shoot stars. Set your goals to a realizable
scale or level. Do not target too many clients and end
up failing with your commitments. So be realistic. Do
not bite off more than you can chew. Maintain your
clientele to a manageable number.
Fourth, develop and make a record of your plan. You
need to have a tangible reminder of the path you are
taking so you would not go astray. It’s easy to get
distracted and side-tracked from your goals. So it’s
best to have it formally written down and give it a
professional feel. This way, you can also have
something to show possible clients, proving that you
are serious in your business.
Fifth, create your lesson plans. Of course, before you
can advise, train, or teach, you have to have a lesson
plan. You have to know what you are going to tell your
clients. Write it on your own. Think of all the
possible weakness people might have in your chosen
field. Focus and write about that. If you don’t know
how to start it, begin with the definition of your
profession and everything else would follow. The field
you are going to write about is your forte, so things
should flow easily once you have begun.
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- It was nice to kind of just see it pay off a little bit better,” Witherspoon said. “It kind of felt like the game kind of slowed down12