To be, or not to be a consultant

I had the pleasure of meeting Jean Gaudry through a mutual friend last week and the subject turned to the life of a freelance consultant. As an executive search specialist, Jean has met many executives who have considered going independent. This is his advice:

Voici le résumé des cinq critères que j’ai présentés un jour dans une conférence intitulée : » Pourquoi devenir ou ne pas devenir consultant » :
1.- Avoir un produit ou service clairement défini et facile à présenter.
2.- Aimer sincèrement travailler avec ce service ou produit.
3.- Se donner sans réserve pour faire la promotion et l’exécution de ce produit ou service.
4.- Avoir un but et un objectif précis pour savoir orienter notre travail au quotidien.
5.- Aimer et trouver stimulant le travail de développement des affaires et la promotion de notre service.

[my loose translation] Here are the five criteria that I presented at a conference entitled, “To be or not to be a consultant”:

  1. Have a clearly defined product or service that is simple to explain.
  2. Sincerely love doing that work.
  3. Be willing to give your all for your work and promoting it [it’s not a hobby].
  4. Have clear long-term objectives and align your daily work to them.
  5. Enjoy doing sales and business development [because you will be doing a lot of it].

I wrote an article, So you want to be an e-learning consultant? a couple of years ago and I would add Jean’s advice for anyone considering this road.

3 Responses to “To be, or not to be a consultant”

  1. Paul Simbeck-Hampson

    Thanks for sharing this insight Harold it certainly resonates with me. I’m still working on No.1, No.2 is without question as is No.3. No.4 is more tough and relates to No.1, I keep referring back to my business, it helps and No.5 is what I love most. Onwards and upwards 🙂


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