If you are new to the consulting business, here’s a quick guide to get you started.
Some of us get to consulting because of a lay-offs, some others of us get here because that’s where they’ve always wanted to be. But don’t think that the life of consultant, or a VA (virtual assistant) is worry free, or all about travel, money, and freedom.
Somehow, you made it here, to the land of the self-employed. Truth be told, it’s not for everybody. If you are used to superiors telling you what to do, and find yourself stunned when there is nobody telling you what to do, then maybe you’re not ready yet. No worries, there is plenty of time to get here, and in the mean time you can home in your skills, your self-respect, and figure out what exactly is it that you would enjoy doing when you start working for yourself. Again, don’t worry. Find something you’re comfortable doing now, and add just a little bit of independence to that. What I mean by it is: take a job job, but start thinking and writing about what you would thoroughly and utterly enjoy doing. Get a journal going, and start writing the how’s, why’s, when’s, where’s of your dream. START NOW!
FOR THE REST OF US, that want to work independently, or have something unique that just needs to be shared with the world, or just want to travel while working, or even cannot stand working under people less competent than ourselves, (or any other valid reason for wanting to work for yourself-in my case all of the above, and the dread of waking up in the morning), WORKING FOR YOURSELF IS THE ONLY WAY TO GO.
As a consultant, you are working for yourself. Every day!
No boss, no 8 AM meetings to dress in uncomfortable clothes for.
Yet, there are bills, there are things you need, there are responsibilities.
The question is HOW DO YOU MEDIATE YOUR NEW FOUND FREEDOM WITH THE NEED TO COVER YOUR EXPENSES?
Simple! This better be what you LOVE doing! That’s it!
It’s all about enjoying what you do. Find something you love doing and everything else will fall into place.
There are so many ways to work remotely nowadays! Between Skype, email, txt, video chat, google wave, or any other collaboration webware, what is the point of working in an office?
Get out there and see the world. Work while you do it, of course, but get out there and become a citizen of this planet.
Before you do, let’s talk turkey. How do you make it happen? How do you take care of expenses as a consultant? Hopefully you start your self-employed journey with a few months of security covered: rent, utilities, food, etc, covered. If not, then hit it hard (“balls to the walls” is that the expression?), from day 1. You’ve got the plan. now stick to it. Actually, stick to what works, adapt your path as you go. You know you can do this! YOU KNOW IT! Let those that keep saying NO around you say what they say. You don’t have to listen. You’ll find out soon that you’ll surround yourself more with more people like you, trail blazers, YES sayers, positive, and unhindered people.
There are tons of ways of making money of late. EHOW articles in your industry, developing a twitter following, Facebook friends (oh, and there is a value, a monetary value to all your friends), start a blog for your business. But most importantly, do what you love. Please can see that. Your clients can see that! Heck, anybody can see if you’re work comes from the love of what you do or not.
Another quick point: Not everything that is related to your perfect scenario is something you’ll want to do. When you work for yourself, you’ll see that you will have to do some bookkeeping, keep track of expenses, budget, deal with suppliers, negotiate, bargain, and most importantly YOU’LL HAVE TO SELL YOURSELF! every day, to every body! But don’t let that scare you! Selling yourself is what you do every morning. You’re selling yourself to yourself> You are convinced that you can make it, that your product is awesome and that you are better than your competition, RIGHT??? Well, you better! Selling yourself and your services to others is about that simple too. As long as you fully believe in your product or service, you can sell ANYTHING!
That’ my spiel!
And now on a side note:
TRAVEL & SELF EMPLOYMENT Can it be done? Hells YEAH!!!
Can you travel and make money? Well, it all depends on what you do. Web work is easy to perform from anywhere (yes, anywhere) on the planet. But if you’re manufacturing glass vases in your shed, and work by yourself, then you might have a bit of an issue. try to liberate yourself from having to be somewhere all the time. If you don;t have to be somewhere all the time, then that’s that much easier to take off for a while.