4 Tips on How You Can Become a Consultant

Use your base of knowledge to rebound from a layoff or make money moonlighting

Set your price points. Part of the competitive advantage of being a private consultant is your years of experience and your creativity. Another part is the competitive cost. When consulting, decide on how much to charge for your services. “You’re not going to charge top dollar and you’re not going to charge bottom basement; but you’re going to meet [clients] in the middle,” Conner says. Research the industry to find out how much other consultants in your geographic location and with your background usually charge. Don’t forget, you can customize packages to better fit your client’s business and financial needs. Visit Consultingbusiness.com for more information on setting your price.

Become your own PR agent. “There are more small businesses than large corporations in the United States,” Conner says. Since small businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy, these companies should be your primary target–initially. To find local small businesses that may need your service, join local young professional organizations. Become a regular at events held by your local chamber of commerce. To get the word out about your services, consider marketing yourself as a public speaker as well to these trade and professional organizations. Speaking at industry events can boost networking opportunities and allow you face time with a slew of potential clients.

Remember, 60% of job seekers are hired via their networks, not online job boards, says Moser says. So, don’t spend all your time online. “Make a record of the people you worked and dealt with,” he says. Let your network know that you are a consultant and let them know what your area of specialization. Moser recommends setting up breakfast meetings, sending holiday cards, your current resume, or an email “just saying, hi.”

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