Consulting, in its simplest terms, is an industry of problem solvers. Consultants help their clients solve a wide variety of challenges as well as help them maximize opportunities across numerous industries including the public sector, private sector, and non-profit arenas. Most of the consultants we support find the market space of small to mid-sized companies to be the perfect clients for them. Decision makers are far more accessible and make decisions faster than larger organizations, which is a huge win for our consultants. It is a huge win for the client as well. When a company comes up against a challenge or an opportunity and needs outside help to make it happen, they can quickly get the expertise of a sophisticated problem solver/consultant without the high price tag of working large consulting firms like Bain or McKinsey & Co.
As the corporate landscape continues to change, more and more high-level professionals are moving towards consulting. It is a field that allows professionals to leverage their backgrounds and experiences, provides the opportunity to a have positive impact on their clients, as well as providing a higher quality lifestyle. So, therefore, consulting is a growing industry, with a global revenue forecast to grow at an average annual rate of 3.5 percent over the next 5 years to 2020 according to IBIS World Industry Reports.
How do you determine if consulting is right for you? There are number of ways to ensure you are making the right decision. Researching industry trends, talking with other consultants about their experiences, and reaching out to peers you have worked with for their opinions are all great starting points. However, in our experience of working with potential consultants, we have found that investing the time to learn all the nuances of what it takes to be successful at consulting is worth the investment of time and energy. When working with our potential consultants, we virtually share a great deal of information to really educate them on consulting. We focus on what we know works in the industry; we help our potential consultants build a preliminary marketing plan, and discuss paths of execution. We walk through pricing models that are linked directly back to what type of revenue they want to achieve. By walking through these nuances, it gives potential consultants a real picture of what consulting would look like for them.
Consulting is not right for everyone but it is becoming right for many. If you are looking for a way to leverage your talents, positively impact multiple clients, and create a balanced life, it may be worth the investment of time to learn more.