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“Independent Consulting Part 4: Your choices as an Independent”

Posted by Clive on February 1, 2019

In the first 3 blogs of this series for Independent Consultants and anyone who is seriously thinking about becoming an Independent Consultant, I explored the role of Independent Consulting, how it differs from a business management role and what it takes to be successful. This blog is all about your choices going forward from wherever you find yourself today!

To me there are 3:

Choice number 1 is to truly act as an Independent Consultant. To do this you need to be prepared to step up and learn the consulting capabilities I have described. It’s only then that you will be able to command the day rates that you expect and deserve. Independent Consulting can be a fantastically rewarding career. This is not only in terms of great satisfaction in helping clients achieve results they did not think possible but also through the financial rewards it can bring for you and for your family.

Choice number 2 is to take on roles as an Independent, where in effect you are utilising your knowledge and experience from previous business roles but within a client environment. You’re not claiming to be a consultant, more a reliable and experienced pair of hands who can add value to a project in some way. I would describe this as an Independent Employee. To be honest with you, if I was to go down this route, I would feel better off doing it within the relative security of employment. That way you enjoy the employee benefits, rather than taking all the risks of being Independent on your shoulders. You may find that the rates you could achieve as an Independent Employee may be no better actually or even worse than you could enjoy as an employee!

Choice number 3 is to act as an Interim. I haven’t covered this option in this video series but thought it important to mention here for completeness. As an Interim, you will typically have been more senior in your previous business roles, have a strong subject matter or functional expertise and will be filling a client position for a fixed period of time, where they cannot fill from within. Interims would certainly benefit from learning and using some of the core consulting capabilities and they can typically command attractive daily rates. There are many Independents who have highly successful careers as Interims.

So that’s the end of this 4-blog series explaining what Independent Consulting is and what it takes to be successful as an Independent Consultant. Everything I’ve covered is based on my experiences over 20 years as a consultant.

Please leave any feedback or comments in the boxes below on this or any of my previous blogs in this series. Thank you.

To your success!

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