Getting Started With A Consulting Business Plan
After spending several years in the corporate sector (or any other industry for that matter), you may want to reap the rewards of the time and energy that you have invested in. One of the best ways to ensure this is by turning your skills and experience into a productive consulting gig. It is a plausible career option, as anyone who possesses specialized knowledge and skills in a particular field can become a full-fledged business advisor.
However, before you embark on the journey of becoming a self-employed business consultant, there are a few things that you definitely need to take care of – like creating a well-thought-out business plan. Business plans not only help in mapping out the opportunities, but also help in detecting threats that may prove fatal for your company later on.
Compared to other startup business plans, a consulting business plan requires a slightly different approach. Here is all that you need to know about making a sustainable business plan and getting your consulting company off the ground!
Key Areas To Consider Before Writing A Business Plan
Start with identifying and defining your niche. Instead of saying yes to every client that comes along, it is better to be selective and take clients from a certain type of business that you are interested in. Since you will be working with similar clients, it will be easier for you to achieve a level of expertise and establish your company as a reliable business consultancy in the industry.
Being a consultant means saying goodbye to your regular income. Although this business can be highly rewarding, there is no consistency when it comes to financial gains. There are times when you will be busy, and then there are times when you won’t. Hence, make sure that you have some money in your savings account that you can use at the end of the year for paying taxes.
Since you won’t have to hire employees or need a production house to make and sell your products, your financial requirements will be low in the beginning. However, consider the financial situation both at your home and your office. Decide how much you will charge for commission and how you will segregate it for different needs. Also, be clear on the amount of money you want to earn in the first few years.
Before delving into the ‘whats’ of the consulting business, it is best to have clear cut answers for ‘whys’. Perhaps you want to work as a consultant for the rest of your life, or maybe it’s a temporary gig that you are doing only for a few years. Regardless of what your personal goals, make sure to clearly define them and write them down. Outlining your personal goals will help you see the bigger picture and make big decisions in the future.
Tips For Writing A Good Consulting Business Plan
1.Write It Down
Remember, in business, planning is considered to be more important than the plan itself. That’s why it is important to get your ideas and thoughts out of your head and on the paper. Take a pen and chart out a rough draft of your business plan on a sheet of paper. Don’t care about grammar or structure. Just make sure that you have all the points covered to create a clear roadmap.
Do thorough research and get a better understanding of the market you are entering. Even if you have previously worked in the field, it is better to analyze the changing dynamics to ensure a smooth start for your business. Use your networking skills to keep yourself updated with the latest happenings to create an effective consulting business plan.
3.Unique Selling Proposition
Like all other business plans, your consulting business plan will also need a highlight, something that will attract clients and make them trust you. That’s your unique selling proposition. What can you do differently than your competitors? Create an answer around this and come up with a USP that will help you market yourself.
4.Simple & Succinct
There is a reason why you must keep your business plan simple and succinct. It is so that you can read and revise it easily whenever you want. Don’t fill dozens of pages explaining every aspect of your business plan in detail. Instead, use pointers and one-liners to define the critical points.
Things To Consider After Writing A Business Plan
1.Revise & Amend
Once you have created your business plan, it’s time to look for loopholes. Share your business plan with peers and previous business associates and get their honest feedback on it. Revise the plan and make changes that you think will benefit you. Keep the process going even after you have established yourself as a consultant. It’s a good idea to review your plan every six months.
Finally, don’t forget to market your consulting business! There is no doubt that to start your new consulting venture, you will need to market your skills and expertise to potential clients. You can use creative ways to promote yourself. For example, use public speaking platforms to garner engagements or partner with companies that offer complementary services to your own.
When prepared well, a consulting business plan can prove to be very helpful in achieving your goals. Take your time to develop and implement a good business plan and watch your business grow!