Tuesday, 17 November 2020

How to Be a Small Business Consultant - 18 Step Checklists

 How is your small business consulting practice growing? What Skills Do You Really Need to Be a Small Business Consultant?

 I have been a strategic consultant dedicated to small businesses since 2013, and the following steps have been very effective for me. I think they can be of use to you too.

 Here are 18 steps to becoming a small business consultant. If you call yourself a consultant, coach, advisor, or mentor, these steps will help you develop the following skills to grow your business.

 The Coach-Consultant concept

 A small business consultant works with clients on strategy, planning and problem solving, and helps clients develop business skills and knowledge.

 These topics range from designing a business model or marketing plan, to determining what marketing techniques to use and how to use them.

 You will often help your clients learn to plan and implement projects. If you are a small business consultant, you will surely give them advice, practice various skills with your client, and will surely brainstorm with him to produce practical results and improve his strategic thinking.

 What is a small business coach-consultant?

 A small business coach-consultant, he helps clients create success by focusing on personal development: time management, self-sabotaging behavior (such as procrastination and distraction) , seeking clarity, making decisions and taking action.

 When you put on your coach hat, you shouldn't give him advice. Instead, you will help the client find their own answers within themselves.

 There is a lot of confusion between what ICF (International Coach Federation) calls a "small business coach" and what the rest of the world thinks is a "small business coach."

 You can call yourself a consultant, advisor, mentor, or coach, and most clients will understand that it means that you help them solve problems and grow their business.

 Pay attention to the results your customers are looking for. (For example, I consider myself a "coach-consultant" where I use both coaching and consulting techniques when working with my clients).

 It is necessary both in consulting and in a coaching process to be effective and provide real value.

 I've been working with micro-businesses and entrepreneurs for a long time, and I rarely find a client who doesn't need both coaching and consulting.

 It is true: they almost never approach me to ask me to coach them directly, it is actually more frequent that they ask me for a consultancy; Because in the end what the micro-entrepreneur is really looking for are practical advice and brainstorming to be able to put them into practice immediately.

 The reality is that micro entrepreneurs in the search to find solutions and to draw up a strategy, get complicated and confused, and if we go through the process, they should work on business development but never without neglecting personal development.

 Checklist for becoming a small business consultant

 Here is a list of things to consider when you are starting your small business consulting practice:

 1. Start with your own skill development.

 You cannot be an effective consultant if you do not add value to the small business owner. Be relentless in showing your skills. You will obtain customer demand while demonstrating the validity of your knowledge and experiences that obviously must be in accordance with the customer's needs.

 2. Check your experience level.

 It is rare for a small business owner to entrust their business to a consultant who has never had a business before, or to a consultant who does not have a high level of expertise in a specific topic. An expert can be defined in general when he already has 10,000 hours of experience with the subject that he says he has experience.

 If you use a traditional 40-hour workweek as a rule of thumb, it means you have at least 5 years of full-time experience covering all small business issues in order to call yourself an expert.

 3. Determine your big reason.

 Before you get to design your own business and get clients, find out why  you want to be a small business consultant, and help this specific audience.

 What is your motivation?  Knowing this will keep you focused on meeting the needs of your audience.

 4. Determine what "success" means to you.

 Keep your eye on the target. The definition of success differs from person to person. Take the time to visualize all the ways that a successful consulting practice will manifest itself in your personal and professional life.

 5. Write a business plan.

 Develop each of the steps that you would take yourself to your client, and work on your own business model design.

 Things to consider: what legal format will you use, what are your mission and vision statements, what are your offerings, your pricing and benefit models? Include the resources you will need to be successful, such as: money, time, skills / knowledge, equipment, and human resources.

 Set goals and milestones for the next 1 year, 3 years, and 5 years. I recommend the following reading about what should be in your business plan.

 6. Write a marketing plan.

 There are many small business consultants out there. How will you be noticeable and stand out from the crowd? How will you connect with your audience and build a relationship based on trust?

 Will you use traditional marketing techniques only, or will you combine traditional and digital marketing? Which of all the available techniques will bring the best results? How much will you invest in marketing (both in time and money)? What are your marketing goals?

 If you want I recommend this reading  how to choose the best marketing techniques  for your consulting business.

 7. Learn coaching skills.

You will work with human beings who have their own set of strengths and weaknesses. Developing the skill of active listening and asking meaningful questions to gain clarity and provide focus is paramount .

 Learn how to hold your clients accountable for implementing their action plans and how to deal with difficult situations.

 8. Choose a focus or niche.

 Determine if your specialty requires you to be licensed or certified (financial and tax advisers, legal advisers, insurance advisers) .

 Will you focus on a subject area, such as email marketing strategies, or will you be an expert who can help clients with a wide range of challenges and projects?

 Will you work with a business of a certain size based on the number of employees or income? Will you work only with local clients, or will your consulting business be national / international?

Read also: Are You looking for Specializedconstruction activities Abdul Rimaaz

 9. Decide if you are going to advise them, or do the work for them.

 Some consultants are more like consultants, working with the owner to do the planning and strategy work together.

 Other consultants are more mentors or business coaches who provide guidance based on their experience but where the client is the one who must respond to their own concerns and carry out the actions themselves.

 You would be there to guide and supervise him, but never to do the job for him.

 10. Learn the problems that most small business owners have  and formulate a strategy to define and solve those problems.

 If you want to work with your client as a mentor, work with him or her on their main issues that they need help with.

 Use strategies, tools, and assessments to help solve these problems, or create strategies of your own. Consider developing your own toolkit as a coach / consultant.

 11. Deeply understand the seven areas of a business model

 To help your clients in the areas that are causing the most damage or have the best return on investment if they make a change.

 12. Systematize your own business for maximum efficiency.

 Use templates, automation, and sales scripts. Take the time to configure the business to create these systems to free up your time and attention for the most important tasks.

 I recommend the following reading How to develop a sales plan

 13. Get help with administrative and marketing work.

 Outsource the tasks that you don't want to do, that you're not an expert, or that take up a lot of time and don't really generate income.

 14. Get your ego out of the way.

While your work can and should be meaningful to you, you are not a consultant to boost your own ego. You are a consultant to serve your clients.

 You will advise them, help them determine the pros and cons of each course of action, and then allow them to make their own decisions.

 They cannot be prevented from making unwise decisions or not following through on an implementation plan.

 Likewise, if your client has a big win, it may be partly because of your advice, but much of the praise goes to your client because he was able to make it happen.

 Decide beforehand what a "successful customer engagement" means to yourself.

 15. Be honest about your own areas of personal development.

 Nobody is perfect. Sometimes we procrastinate. Sometimes we get distracted. Sometimes we let anger or fear get the better of us.

 Sometimes we don't communicate as well as we can. Discover your weaknesses and learn how to overcome them, or hire a professional to help you deflect them.

 16. Choose marketing techniques that bring results to the sales conversation.

 Take as FOLLOW his relentless marketing. If your strategies aren't bringing you the desired results, upgrade.

 Don't choose marketing techniques simply because they are trending; If they don't really bring positive results or help build your brand awareness, throw them away.

 17. Learn problem solving, decision making, project management, and time management skills.

 These 4 skills will provide the backbone of support you will offer your customers and help you run your own business successfully.

 18. Learn from the teachers.

 Why reinvent the wheel? You can discover smart shortcuts by paying attention to the top consultants in your industry.

 In any small business consulting niche there are always several people who have already excelled and it is smart to learn from the best.

 Study their offerings, their marketing methods, the way their businesses work, and the way they work with clients. Determine if these methods would work for you and your clients.

 In my case, I have my own mentors, from whom I have learned a lot. Based on all that I have learned, I have been helping small business owners to grow their businesses for several years and get the results they want.

 I try my best to pass my techniques on to other entrepreneurs, to help them cut through the learning curve and create an effective and efficient consulting business for you.

 Do not hesitate to ask me any questions that arise in your beginning as a small Abdul Rimaaz business consultant. I'm always online.


# AbdulRimaaz


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