Successful Independent Consulting

Website Advice for Solopreneurs

Successful Independent Consulting

As a self-employed professional do you need a website? Is it worth the time and money if you get most of your business from referrals or by subcontracting? The short answer is, yes. Here’s why: 1. Millions of people are self-employed. Having a website will help you stand out from the crowd.

To Boost Your Business, Track Your Time (Nearly All of It!)

Successful Independent Consulting

Management guru Peter Drucker once said “you can't manage what you can't measure.” I prefer to say, “Anything that’s measured can be improved.” By tracking (measuring) how you spend your time, you can increase your effectiveness, your income, and even your quality of life.

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Consultant, Contractor, Freelancer - Labels Matter!

Successful Independent Consulting

If you were a hotel chain, would you be a Motel 6, Courtyard by Marriott, or a Ritz-Carlton? If you refer to yourself as a freelancer or consultant, what does that imply?

Ten Factors to Consider Before Jumping into Independent Consulting

Successful Independent Consulting

Being a self-employed consultant or “solopreneur” isn’t for everyone. Sure, it sounds fabulous – be selective about which jobs you take, have a flexible schedule, escape office politics, make really good money – but it definitely has some drawbacks.

The 5 Stages of Account-Based Marketing — and How to Win Them All

Successfully complete the five stages of ABM: define, identify, engage, convert, and connect. We’ll show you how to create a unified system with your sales team to help them land more qualified opportunities and connect with prospects like never before.

How to Be an Effective Consultant on Virtual Projects

Successful Independent Consulting

Photo by Euan Cameron on Unsplash. As independent consultants, we’ve all worked remotely to some extent but now we are working virtually 100%. And likely, this isn’t temporary. Many companies are already saying they won’t require every employee to return to the workplace this calendar year.

Now is the Best Time to Raise Your Billing Rate

Successful Independent Consulting

Photo 50727473 / Piggy Bank © David Franklin | Dreamstime.com. The easiest time to raise your rate is on the cusp of something new — a new year, a new project, a new client. With the new year just around the corner, now is an excellent time to inform your clients.

Boost Your Professionalism with a Business Logo

Successful Independent Consulting

Photo: Getty Images. As a an independent consultant you probably set your own rates. The more professional you are, the more likely you’ll be able to charge more for your expertise and services. Having a logo for your business will help you look like “the real deal” so why not get one?

Why Your Prospect Pipeline Dries Up

Successful Independent Consulting

The most successful independent consultants find their own work by building a pipeline of leads through their own outreach efforts. Using a customer relationship management tool (CRM) can make this so much easier.

How to Be an Effective Consultant While Working Remotely

Successful Independent Consulting

Photo by Euan Cameron on Unsplash. As independent consultants, we’ve all probably worked remotely to some extent but as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, it appears that working virtually will like be part of the “new normal.”

The Ultimate Guide to Executive Recruiting

Sourcing the right executive candidates and filling key managerial roles in an organization can be difficult, even in the best of times. Download this eBook to level up your discovery process, talent sourcing, and strategies for reaching your best-fit candidates.

Supplement Your Consulting Pipeline by Subcontracting

Successful Independent Consulting

Most independent consultants have some FUD (fear, uncertainty, or doubt) when it comes to finding work. Even if you’ve been self-employed for years, dry spells between projects can still happen, and if you’re just starting out it’s especially difficult to find your own work.

Now Is the Perfect Time to Raise Your Consulting Billing Rate

Successful Independent Consulting

The easiest time to raise your rate is on the cusp of something new — a new year, a new project, a new client. With the new year just around the corner, now is an excellent time to inform your clients. This article offers ideas of how to do this, as well as some sample language to use.

Cash Flow Relief for Independent Consultants: the CARES Act & Other Ideas

Successful Independent Consulting

We’re in an unprecedented situation because of the COVID-19 coronavirus, and the economic fallout has been drastic for many business sectors, such as travel and restaurants. For us as consultants, the effects are likely to be more gradual but our income will likely be affected.

How and When to Raise Your Consulting Rate

Successful Independent Consulting

The easiest time to raise your rate is on the cusp of something new — a new year, a new project, a new client. With the new year just a few weeks away, now might be the time. This article offers ideas of how to do this, as well as some sample language to use when notifying your clients. How to determine your new rate Unfortunately, there’s no one-size-fits-all formula. Instead, I suggest triangulating on a rate that seems fair. Look at several different numbers and then decide.

12 Plays to Kickstart Your Recruitment Process

To stay ahead in this race, every recruiter needs a good playbook. In this eBook, we lay out 12 recruiting plays that can automate key steps in your recruitment process, helping you reduce both the cost and the time it takes to hire the best candidates.

If You're a SME Make Extra Money with GLG

Successful Independent Consulting

Most self-employed consultants I know have deep expertise in a certain function or industry, and nearly everyone would like to earn some extra money. If this describes you, check out what I recently discovered. It’s the Gerson Lehrman Group ( GLG ), a 20-year-old international company that brings together subject matter experts (SMEs) with businesses and non-profits looking for insight on various topics.

Consultants: Is Your Email Signature Helping You Stand Out from the Crowd?

Successful Independent Consulting

As an independent consultant, it’s vital that you convey professionalism at every step if you want to get hired at a great rate. Details matter, particularly when you’re making an initial impression. That’s why having a professional email address is a must, as is an eye-catching, effective email signature. Consider the following two examples. Who are you more interested to meet and potentially hire? Obviously, Jared’s is more professional but let’s dissect why.

Negotiation Tips for Independent Consultants

Successful Independent Consulting

Negotiating is typically hard for everyone, but it’s especially tough for consultants. It’s our nature to make the client happy, so negotiating for a higher rate feels awkward. But when you’re self-employed, even the smallest increase in your rate can translate to big bucks , particularly if the rate is for a long project, or if you’re working with an ongoing client.

Avoid W-2 Status and Extra Tax: Become a Licensed Business

Successful Independent Consulting

Photo credit: ID 8861152 © Paul Jantz | Dreamstime.com. One of the benefits of being self-employed is paying less tax than you would if you were paid like an employee on a W-2 tax basis.

12 Tips for Selling to the C-Suite

The question for sales pros is this: Are you ready for the challenge, and opportunity, of selling to the C-suite? The following 12 tips can help ensure that you and your team are.

Be a Pro: Eliminate the Gray Square on Your LinkedIn Profile!

Successful Independent Consulting

As an independent consultant running your own business, good marketing is critical. No one is going to hire an unpolished freelancer to help solve their business problem, especially if they’re going to spend tens of thousands of dollars. Clearly, a professional image is vital. A prospective client must see you as credible from the very first impression.

Build Credibility as a Consultant with Success Stories

Successful Independent Consulting

Photo by Allie on Unsplash. Hiring a consultant can be a difficult decision for a client, especially when they’re going to be spending tens of thousands of dollars. They need to be sure that the person they’re hiring is competent, credible, trustworthy, and most importantly, effective. Use short stories or mini case studies to build your credibility before you’ve even had a conversation with a prospective client.

Website or No Website? Answers and Help for Independent Consultants

Successful Independent Consulting

As a self-employed consultant do you really need a website? I’m asked this a lot, particularly if a consultant gets most business from referrals or they contract through agencies or boutique firms. Besides, it’s highly unlikely that a prospective client is going to stumble upon your website and decide to hire you. Surely creating a website is a waste of time and money, right?

Why and How Personal Branding is Vital for Independent Consultants

Successful Independent Consulting

Everyone in business recognizes strong brands and understands their importance. Coca-Cola. Apple. These brands represent certain values. Their branding helps drive sales by keeping their products or services fresh in the consumer’s mind. Independent consultants need to think the same way. You need to be top-of-mind when the need for your expertise pops up so the client thinks to call you, or their colleague thinks to refer you. In our field this is called personal branding.

The Power of Conversation Intelligence

This eBook will answer all your questions and more on Conversation Intelligence (CI) by providing a complete overview and its need in Revenue organizations - delivering impact from your Sales Development Representatives all the way to the C-Suite.

Why Friends Don't Let Friends W-2

Successful Independent Consulting

"As an independent consultant, does it matter how I get paid?” Absolutely! In the U.S., being paid on a 1099 tax basis as a business instead of on a W-2 tax basis like a temp worker makes a huge difference to your profitability for two key reasons: You pay less tax. You save more for retirement. Here’s how I figured this out. Several years ago, as an independent consultant I did my taxes two ways using TurboTax® software.

Is It Time to Consider a Fixed Fee for Your Consulting Services?

Successful Independent Consulting

Generally, the more experience you have as an independent consultant, the more likely you should move from billing by the hour to a fixed fee. At some point you’ll master your specialty and work much more efficiently than others. This means to earn what your services are truly worth, you’ll have to keep raising your hourly rates. But at some point, you’ll reach an invisible rate ceiling when clients think you’re too expensive, even if it takes you half the time to do the work.

Shift Your Perspective to Make Business Development Easier

Successful Independent Consulting

Most consultants I know struggle with business development, and it’s a top concern among those thinking about going independent. “ I don’t know how to build a pipeline of leads ” or “ I’m not good at sales ” are common refrains. Most of us never had sales training so this concern is understandable, but reframing how we think about business development can turn concern into action. Read any definition of business development and you won’t find the word sales.

Quote Your Consulting Billing Rate with Confidence

Successful Independent Consulting

ID 46944176 © Dundja | Dreamstime. It takes practice to quote your consulting billing rate with confidence. The tactics in this article will help if you bill by the hour or by the day. There are other ways to bill for your talent and expertise but those will be covered in another article. Benchmark so you know your rate is reasonable. There are lots of ways to do this.

100 Pipeline Plays: The Modern Sales Playbook

For the first time, we’re sharing the winning plays that took us from scrappy startup to a publicly traded company. Use our proven data-driven plays to grow your pipeline and crush your revenue targets.

What To Do If Your Client Doesn't Pay

Successful Independent Consulting

It was bound to happen. After 15 years and hundreds of contracts, I finally had a client that didn’t pay, and didn’t pay, and didn’t pay. For six months there was one lame update after another. “We’re We’re working on it,” or “We’ve switched to a new process.” Yesterday, my bank finally received the wire transfer. Here’s my story, what I learned along the way, and steps you can take if you find yourself in the same situation.

How to Figure Out Your Consulting Bill Rate

Successful Independent Consulting

Dear Liz, I have a quick question. I know a consultant who is going to do some work designing a company’s program for high-potential employees. The consultant has talent but not much experience. What hourly rate would you consider low, fair, too high? Can you ballpark this for me? Louis Although the question is brief, a helpful answer is not. Pricing consulting services is notoriously difficult, particularly for self-employed consultants.

How To 183

How Tax Reform Affects Independent Consultants

Successful Independent Consulting

Adobe Stock photo #182517755 by nerthuz. Everyone has questions about the sweeping tax reform that became law at the end of last year. As a coach and champion for independent consultants, I went on a fact-finding mission to answer two important questions: Are self-employed consultants still better off being paid on a 1099 tax basis as a business or on a W-2 tax basis through a third party?

How Diligent Biz Dev Led to a Six-Figure Consulting Project

Successful Independent Consulting

“ Home Run - Nationals Park ” © Gareth Milner, Creative Commons license. Recently I helped a consultant land a $420,000 consulting contract. That’s not a typo. It’s an 11-month project for one consultant: $320k in consulting fees and another $100k for travel expenses. I’ve excluded my company’s agency fee in these numbers; the actual budget was a bit larger. Clearly this was a big win for the consultant.

Course 174

Your Guide to Using Conversational Marketing to Drive Demand Generation

What is conversational marketing really about? This guide will examine the market forces at play, shifting buyer trends, how to leverage conversation marketing, and the tactics involved in adopting it for a B2B demand generation strategy.

Consulting's Secret Club

Successful Independent Consulting

· ID 70396708 © Anastasiia Bobko | Dreamstime.com. Last August I wrote a blog post about how labels matter , specifically that you should make more money by calling yourself a consultant instead of a contractor. But it’s not just about labels and language. It’s not enough to simply replace contractor with consultant on your résumé and LinkedIn profile. I’ve been studying the LinkedIn profiles of various contractors and consultants I know and reflecting on how they usually get their work.

Self-Employed? Prep for Tax Season to Save Big

Successful Independent Consulting

Tax season is probably the most important time for independent consultants to think like business owners. This especially means being smart about how we handle our money. Our motivation is simple: pay as little tax as possible, ideally without triggering an audit. We all should be asking ourselves (and our accountants) this question: As a business owner, what can I do to lower my tax bill?

20 Qualities of a Consulting Rock Star

Successful Independent Consulting

Photo © Vectomart via Dreamstime.com. As we close out the year, I’m reprising one of my most commented on LinkedIn articles. First published January 12, 2015, it’s just as relevant today as it was then. I’ve also expanded the original list of qualities from 19 to an even 20, and updated a few other things based the LinkedIn comments. Here’s to a prosperous 2018! Let’s face it, not all consultants are created equal.

Two Reflection Exercises to Help You Work Smarter

Successful Independent Consulting

Everyone wants to work smarter, but when you’re self-employed finding time to work on your business, not just in it, is hard. You’re already so busy doing client work, where’s the time to make improvement? It’s even harder to step back and evaluate what you’re doing, not just how you’re doing it. Working smarter is about doing the right things, not just doing tasks more efficiently. But how do you know if you’re doing the right things? And what does “working smarter” really mean?

LinkedIn + ZoomInfo Recruiter: Better Data for Better Candidates

Check out our latest ebook for a guide to the in-depth, wide-ranging candidate and company data offered by ZoomInfo Recruiter — and make your next round of candidate searches faster, more efficient, and ultimately more successful.