How to start a consulting business in Europe ?

The word “consulting” has become so common in everyday language that even lawyers (who have a well-defined and fairly clearly defined profession) are sometimes referred to as “advice” by their clients. However, it is a specific activity: namely that of all professionals who provide services called “intellectual” to help the creation or development of other companies.

What ingredients will condition the success of the project?

First you need to have a strong network. A consultant who would launch without connection has a 90% chance to crash. Then you have to have real expertise. Customers are now waiting for real and concrete answers to their problems, not big theories that lead to nothing. The consultant must therefore be able to design and implement effective solutions. The last and very important point is that you have to be able to deal with financial difficulties for one year without having to pay yourself any money. It is indeed very difficult to initiate an activity by asking each day how you will do to feed your family…This financial mattress allows you to focus solely on the launch of your activity.

How do you proceed to start your activity?

Our first advice would be this one: do only what you can do, subcontract all the rest! Some consulting entrepreneurs, when they start, they want to make their own brochures, accounting etc, which can make them waste a lot of time. We recommend that you outsource all this to focus on your core business. You must also build your offer carefully, present it well and give it visibility. For this, you must think a lot and talk to business leaders or people who may have a critical eye. You must finally try not to fall into the trap of wanting to make an all-out offer. In doing so, the consultants feel that they will potentially reach more people, which is true. However, the main problem is an all-out offer may also be of no interest to anyone. Companies are now looking for experts in a given field, not generalists.

The commercial dimension is very important

The commercial aspect is essential. We can even say that it’s probably the number one condition for success of a consulting business. If you want to become a consultant and you do not have the commercial insight and “do not like money”, the process can be very complicated. Do not be afraid to pick up your phone and get your services refused nine times out of ten, because the next call can be the one. It is therefore better to show a lot of perseverance and resistance to frustration!

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