Many professionals, after years of public service or private practice often consider going to consultancy with the aim of giving back what they have amassed over the years. However, a significant number of them either fail or quit. All consultants usually struggle at some point, especially when new to the business. It takes a little time to learn the ropes, but not everyone learns. To avoid this, solo consulting offers you the perfect platform to kick start you consultancy dream. There are many things, which the consultants do, or fail to do, that leads to them to failure.
Reasons for failure
Lack of sufficient knowledge
Knowledge on a particular niche is one of the most valuable assets that a consultant must have. There are projects, which can be tremendously stressful and require a lot of knowledge and expertise to handle them. For a successful business, the consultant needs to be able to handle any project of any magnitude with a lot of prowess. Some consultants think that they can act as intermediaries and transfer the job to another company while keeping a cut of the profits. Such back channels may work a couple of times but will ultimately lead to failure of the consultancy business. Having proper knowledge is the only way to succeed.
A great communicator is one of the qualities a consultant must possess. This must be showcased in all aspects, including face-to-face talks, email writing or giving a presentation to some people. A consultant must be able to articulate all his/her points very clearly and efficiently, at all times. Having a good business relationship with clients and ensuring that they are impressed is the key to success. A consultant who has poor communication skills will fail.
Not having a thick skin
The types of clients you have will possess different characters and personalities. Some will be good to you and others will be upright rude and mean. A consultant should be able to shield anything that might affect his work and overlook some things for the benefits of the business. This is not to say taking insults smiling, but a client angrily complaining about poor performance, missed dates, or anything that was not to their expectations, should not weigh you down.
Not developing a brand
Similar to any other product, a consultant should try to be a clear standout. The best way of doing this is by having a brand recognition. The brand should be associated with quality services and excellent reliability among other characteristics. A consultant should brand himself within a firm as well. Whenever the management of the firm considers staffing a new project, your branding will help you land the top consulting position on the project.