While this phrase may, for some, sound like the death-nell of their chosen career, consulting may be a way of fulfilling those professional dreams before the year ages much more and those New Year’s Resolutions become just a memory.  So what do you want to achieve in 2011?  For some, it may be that larger, in some cases, life-threatening impacts have shifted your focus, and for others, it may mean that you’re seeking a fresh start.  Don’t know where to being?  

Want more than a new job?  Have you considered consulting?

If you’ve accumulated experience, competencies, an industry network, and a reputation that is valued, it might be a good time to set up on your own.  Many businesses, have divested their specialised staff, or not employed those advisors to begin with in order to manage overheads in the start-up phase of their operation.  To this end, with attrition, or tighter purse strings, specialty advisors may not be on hand to offer assistance to an organisation, nor their clients, in the way that they once had.

There appears a shift in the face of a proliferation of natural disasters for businesses to consider their exposure on Intellectual Property, Data Recovery, and to ‘Future Proof’ their organisation with a more long-term strategy.  Consultants tend to be a mechanism to support this type of future-proofing.

So, what kind of consultant might you be?  What specialty have you developed in your career?  What makes you different from other individuals offering services?  If, on paper, your credentials, years of experience, project and client list, and industry representation looks worthwhile, and that with a desire to master your own business, you should investigate establishing your name.

But be warned, scavenging clients from an existing or recent employer will bring you undone, as will contravening any contract stipulation that is still in place, or entering a partnership with another consultant who is less than reputable.

How do you know that you should be considering a consultancy?

  • Industry peers ask your advice specific to your expertise;
  • Other employees in your company seek your input in projects or regard you as a key contributor to the department;
  • You have a well-developed base of knowledge skills and experience (around ten years); and
  • You are wondering about the next career adventure and you are prepared to take a little, calculated risk.

How do you know that consultancy is not for you?

  • Face-to-face relationships with clients, without company backing, send you into a flat spin/cold sweat;
  • Project management is not your forté;
  • You like your cosy office and regular morning meetings with co-workers; or
  • You rely on your regular pay packet and entitlements.


If you think that starting your own consultancy could be a career boost for you, but you’d like more information, seek advice from others you trust who have this experience, research on-line to an industry forum or government information sessions (Australia-wide), or seek information from other professionals who work with or for consultants, such as accountants or solicitors.  You’ll never know what your missing…