At some point in your career, whatever industry you serve, you will be getting close to achieving expertise in everything you do. And when this occurs, you might be tempted to take those skills away from the safety of your employed status and all its benefits and strike out alone as a consultant.
It makes a lot of sense. With your experience, you can create a consultancy business that chooses who it works with, and you can get a little more control over your life and direction than you currently have as an employee. There is a much higher opportunity for financial success, too.
That said, there are inherent risks with going it alone, even with your Consultant-level experience and knowledge. And there is, of course, the obvious threat of failure. To ensure your ideas for becoming a consultant have the greatest possible chance of success, there are few things you need to do. Let’s take a look at some of the best recommendations right away – read on to find out more.
Certificates and Licensing
Depending on your industry, you may need special certification to strike out on your own as a consultant. Independent financial advisors are the perfect example of this. You will need a Certificate in Financial Planning, for a start and a Diploma in Financial Planning is another necessary qualification. You will need to register with the FSA and ensure that you are up to speed t all levels of compliance in the financial industry. So, there are clear roadblocks in your way in certain sectors, but the reality is that getting these types of qualifications will only improve your future business offering to prospects.
General business coaching
Consultancy is all about teaching. And no matter how skilled you have been in your line of work when it comes to coaching others it’s a different story. With this in mind, professional coaching classes might be a good idea for you to get to grips with how to teach people efficiently. As a consultant, the quicker you can deliver vital information, the faster you can move onto your next client. Excellent teaching skills, ultimately, will help you earn more money.
It’s a lot easier working in a fixed structure that an employer offers. You have the support of other people, from sales and marketing through to IT and customer service. But when you go it alone, it’s all down to you. Superb organizational skills are a must, as you will need to plan every hour of your day to maximise your time and opportunities.
Learn to network
Finally, your consultancy business will live and die by your ability to get out there and find clients in the early stage. As your reputation grows, you will see that more customers come to you, but in those early days, networking is going to be essential. Start doing this before you even leave your job. In an ideal world, you will have a bunch of clients ready and waiting for you before you sever your ties with your former employer, and can get started on earning a crust from Day One.
This post has been contributed by Ryan Gatt, it may contain affiliate links.