Now that we have covered the best and worst tips for success, the latter of which I hope none of you have had the misfortune to relate to, it is time to move on to if you are actually ready to make these changes and why you are doing them.
Of the many lessons I have learned over the past 12 years, one of the most salient has been how difficult it is to establish a consultancy practice, as opposed to operating as a sole-practitioner consultant. Why should this be some much harder than building any other type of business?
In the next few articles I will attempt to uncover what the challenges are, and how they can potentially be dealt with. I have tried to group the challenges under the following 10 headings:
- The reality check – why are you contemplating making this transition?
- What are the pros and cons of remaining a sole practitioner and building a practice?
- Do you have an exit strategy?
- Do you have a clear idea of the value creators (and destroyers) in your planned practice?
- What will a successful practice look like?
- Can you find the right “partners”?
- Can you find the right “associates”?
- Can you create the right external network of service providers, intermediaries and specialists?
- What does a workable financial model look like?
- How will you measure the extent to which you are moving in the right direction?
By the time we have worked our way through these 10 areas, you should have a much better idea of whether to make this transition or not. You will also have a clearer perception of how to go about it, and what the key “do’s and don’ts” are. Over the next few articles, I will be building in what I have experienced myself, and what I have seen others experience, to reinforce some of the points.