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    14 Replies Latest reply on May 13, 2008 5:50 PM by michael2

    How to start a career as a consultant?

    RMM618 Newbie
      I am interested in acting as a consultant for businesses and individuals who are interested in becoming involved in their communities. I have experience as a Service-Learning Coordinator and I founded my own non-profit, but I'm not sure where to start. My biggest hurdles are how to market myself and find clients. Any suggestions would be appreciated!
        • Re: How to start a career as a consultant?
          LUCKIEST Guide
          Tell us more. I know the job description of a Service-Learning Coordinator.
          What is your background and how much experience do you have??
          If you are going into business, it should be to MAKE a profit so why form a non profit??
          Is the following what you want to be doing??

          • Work with faculty to implement service learning in the \\ classroom .
          • Oversee all aspects of community \\ service requirements.
          • Serve as a community liaison for the high school..
          • Research funding opportunities and write grants for ongoing funding.
          Good luck, LUCKIEST
          1 of 1 people found this helpful
            • Re: How to start a career as a consultant?
              RMM618 Newbie
              I have 6 years experience working with nonprofits in Providence and I'm interested in helping companies (Corporate Citizenship is very popular right now and I've taught about it for 6 years) and/or individuals who are looking to make connections in the community by providing volunteers or volunteering themselves. In my past jobs, I placed college students in Service-Learning and Volunteer opportunities and I have strong relationships with area nonprofits as well as the knowledge of how to make a good "fit."

              I do not intend to be a non-profit entity, but I formed a grassroots community group (that has non-profit status) that has been very successful and I believe that the leadership skills I used to get my community involved will be an asset to my work.

              I hope that provides a little more of a background as to my goals.
            • Re: How to start a career as a consultant?
              Bluesuit Adventurer
              Welcome to the community. And let me applaud you for your nobel business goals. I agree with you, increasingly companies large and small are beginning to become more socially responsible - both in the communities they impact and for the global good, e.g. environment. Your consulting services is timely. Often consultants get their start/first customer with a company/client they have worked with previoulsy in another capacity perhaps. Do you have any existing relationships that you can leverage? Have you informed all of your existing contacts of this new career move?
              • Re: How to start a career as a consultant?
                DomainDiva Ranger
                When I started markeing myself as a consultant I first identified the people/businesses that would really benefit from my services.

                I got a huge list and prepared an executive resume/marketing handout and started on the telephone. If someone was interested from a phone call then I would send them some info.

                It took about 120 days..when the first call came in everything has snowballed and I have been busy for 12 years...straight...all consulting. I would not know what to do if I had a real job.
                1 of 1 people found this helpful
                • Re: How to start a career as a consultant?
                  marktingcoach Newbie
                  Hi RMM,

                  I am a marketing consultant and coach and am located in Warwick. If you would like to get together for a cup of coffee and discuss what you are looking to accomplish, I would be happy to meet with you.

                  I'm looking forward to hearing from you.

                  Peter George, The Marketing Coach
                  • Re: How to start a career as a consultant?
                    Lighthouse24 Ranger

                    1. Think of all the community or non-profit groups with whom you have a contact who serves in a senior leadership role.
                    2. Ask those contacts to name the local businesses from which they would like to see better "citizenship" (such as more active volunteer participation).
                    3. Approach the managers of those companies, persuade them to become better corporate citizens, and then teach them how.

                    The fastest way to gain experience, recognition, and credibility as a consultant is by finding solutions to the problems no one else is willing to take on. (I'm not belittling your background, but it is not all that difficult to find, train, and coordinate volunteers from companies that are already eager to help out in the community anyway.) Every community has one or two sizable employers who are notoriously bad citizens, and rarely give anything more than excuses. Figure out how to "turn" one of them, then do it successfully, and other people will be buying your lunch for the next year just to hear how you pulled it off. Plus, turning one bad corporate citizen into a good one will get you more credibility (and get it much faster) than turning ten good corporate citizens into better ones.

                    Hope this helps. Best of luck!
                      • Re: How to start a career as a consultant?
                        RMM618 Newbie
                        Thank you to everyone for your responses.

                        Peter, I don't think I'm at a place yet where I need to work on increasing my marketing. I'm just starting out and think that would probably be more helpful when I've established myself a little. Thank you for your offer to meet.

                        Lighthouse24,
                        I didn't think of contacting the groups I've worked with and taking that approach. That's probably a good idea because I have strong relationships with several prominent nonprofits and I'm sure they would be able to suggest some companies and/or individuals to approach.
                          • Re: How to start a career as a consultant?
                            marktingcoach Newbie
                            My offer was to sit with you and provide free advice regarding your initial questions which included marketing, getting more clients, and getting your service off the ground. As someone who has built from scratch and then sold two successful businesses, I think I can offer advice on more than just marketing. I am also a director on the Central Rhode Island Chamber of Commerce and may be able to connect you with people you may want to meet. In any case, the offer still stands.

                            Good luck.

                            Peter George, The Marketing Coach
                            ThinkTouchPoints.com
                        • Re: How to start a career as a consultant?
                          Lighthouse24 Ranger
                          Just wondering about your progress . . . have you gotten your practice off the ground yet?
                          • Re: How to start a career as a consultant?
                            galexa Newbie

                            A business interest or passing phase?

                            We have all had notions or ideas about going into business, the areas of concentration business is marketing whether it be in the local perodical or becoming a member of your local Chamber of Commerce, exposure in any sense if good sense.
                            • Re: How to start a career as a consultant?
                              michael2 Wayfarer
                              I have the same conviction and we seem to be at the same point in the process Can we exchange notes? Please