The Consulting Life
I have found the consulting life to be particularly
I'm not going to
At the end of this chapter is a short list of titles that can serve as a
Joining the rank of the independent or staff consultant can be exhilarating and boost your career both
During the short-lived dot-com craze, it seemed everyone was a consultant. Individuals who had little experience or practical knowledge were put on projects that failed, and the bitter taste is still
I view this as a positive to the technology industry in general and to the consulting field in particular. It weeded out those who did not actually produce, leaving the industry healthier for those remaining.
The respect you gain from consulting comes from providing a business with
I recommend a book titled Dangerous Company , by Charles Madigan and James O'Shea. The book is geared toward the management consulting industry, but the message applies to technology consulting, too. The authors discuss the largely misguided trust that many businesses place in their consultantsleading to failed and costly projects and, in some cases, failed businesses.
You should take very seriously the stake that a business owner or management places in your work. Good advice can help build a business. Bad advice can be devastating.
I mentioned already the perspective that consultants make their own hours. After you're in the field, you will understand how untrue this is in practice. However, there
However, you do get to determine the projects you take on and the hours you use to complete them. If you're disciplined and like working in the evening, you can do some of your work then. If early morning is your optimal production time, as is the case with me, you can perform your work then.
This can leave time for you to take care of other matters during the day. Of course, if your
It is important that you schedule appropriate gaps during working hours. If you don't, even small emergencies or setbacks with one client can suddenly have you overloaded and unable to complete your day's work.
This also leads me to more exciting projects. Many IT departments, burdened with the daily upkeep of company technology, cannot undertake new projects. Their current workload is spent maintaining existing technology. Consultants are often brought in for the initial
The by-product is that consultants often have the privilege of working with the latest and most innovative technologies. This becomes a self-perpetuating advantage in professional development. As you complete one project and gain that experience, you become more
It is not always that your talent is
Although the pay for consultants and contractors has
In addition, I market
The compensation for consulting can certainly lead to a six figure income. However, to develop that type of income, you must be extremely effective at both project work and personal marketing.