Six Steps to Success
If you’re having difficulties in your consulting business, or want to grow considerably, there are six areas to examine that can immediately focus you IF you’re honest about the responses.
- Defining yourself: Can you quickly, clearly, and articulately explain how others are better off after having done business with you? That should take about 15 seconds. (“Elevator speeches” are among the dumbest advice you’ll ever receive.)
- Finding/attracting buyers: Are you regularly reaching the people who can write a check for your value, and are they regularly finding you? Is your marketing directed at the right people to begin with, and do you have sufficient appeal and visibility to attract them?
- Creating relationships: Can you form trusting relationships with buyers relatively quickly (in one or two in-person meetings)? Will they share their objectives, concerns, and personal views with you, and actively seek out your advice and reactions? Do you have the business acumen and interpersonal skills to accomplish this?
- Creating proposals: Do you have a template for a brief, highly focused proposal based on a large ROI for the buyer and equitable compensation for you? Can you readily provide options to escalate the scope of the project and fees? Are you using value-based fees?
- Proposal acceptance: Are at least 80 percent of your proposals accepted without compromise or negotiation? Are they accepted within one week of submission? Are two-thirds accepted with higher options (option 2 or 3, not 1)?
- Repeat/referral business: Are you receiving both solicited and unsolicited referrals from your buyer, and are you able to create additional business with the same buyer at least half the time?
Choose those that are causing you a problem and improve your skills or modify your behaviors. Find someone to help you if you don’t know what to do next. You have to be adept at ALL of these steps to dramatically grow a business.
© Alan Weiss 2011. All rights reserved.