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Consulting Question
Old 07-30-2015, 08:46 PM   #1
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Consulting Question

I plan to retire from my full time job in three years and am thinking about consulting for a year or two after. Any suggestions or advice about how to find consulting jobs?
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Old 07-30-2015, 09:47 PM   #2
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1. Have a good LinkedIn profile - I've got a couple of jobs that way
2. Have a good network of friends and former colleagues - 90% of my work has been through referrals from people I knew from previous parts of my life
3. Do a real bang up job for your first clients - even at a cut rate price. Nothing beats having a reference client


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Old 07-30-2015, 11:13 PM   #3
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The easiest but less rewarding way is apply to jobs you see from the headhunting companies.

LinkedIn with references and don't fill it up accepting new "friends" which dilutes the quality of your relationship web.
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Old 07-31-2015, 09:45 AM   #4
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Full time consulting is anything but being retired, quite the opposite.

Why not hang a shingle and work your own hours?

After I retire my plan is to do some expert witness testimony close to pro bono to get my feet wet and established, then possibly work as a hired gun for an audit firm.

Just depends on how much time I need to stimulate my brain in FIRE.
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Old 07-31-2015, 09:54 AM   #5
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Properly network with recruiters who don't say things like "I admit I am not the guru, but once we meet you, I will hand you over to John who is the guru."

Have go-to references of people who are a FAN of yours and can discuss your relevant work experience.

Do not stop networking. LinkedIn / Job Boards where your resume and settings clearly identify you as a C2C contractor and than don't entertain FTE.

Work with past employers to see if there is a part time consulting role for you and show them how you can still provide value on a part time basis.


Networking is not clicking invites on LinkedIn. It's having a long conversation or even better a 30minute coffee-cup style meeting somewhere mutual where you can demonstrate your exact requirements and build clout and interest in real people who can really help you. If you know they are heavy hitters with a solid network themselves, perhaps ask them what there hobbies and interests are and then follow-up with an invite to the ball-game, or a batting cage, or the salon or a walk at the pier etc. Make an impression with your tact, approach, decisiveness, energy, charisma and charm.




IMO getting that first contract that is right for you is the most difficult, followed by actually proving successful. You don't always need a 100% success rate so long as you are passionate, dedicated and thorough.
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Old 07-31-2015, 10:36 AM   #6
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I've been successful finding short term gigs on craigslist under my job category and also under Jobs/etc. You can also try hourlynerd.com or seniorjobbank.org I heard about these two resources on the local news recently but don't have any firsthand experience with either site.
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Old 07-31-2015, 11:20 AM   #7
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Thanks to everyone who has responded so far. I have heard that consulting is a demanding (and often thankless) job, but the idea of having something that you have some control over and knowing that there is a time limit, seems appealing. How are the specific expectations and job responsibilities handled - I'm thinking a contract will be involved, but is that something I create, or the company I would be consulting for? Also, any ballpark on what I should expect in terms of pay?
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Old 07-31-2015, 11:35 AM   #8
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At a minimum I think you would need an engagement letter and/or a customer service agreement for each client/project.

You will also probably need to be bonded (E&O insurance).

Pay will depend on what type of consulting you are doing.

I've actually never thought about what I would have to do to hang a shingle.

I'm sure there are consultants that would help set you up.
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Old 07-31-2015, 12:00 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Symplelife View Post
Thanks to everyone who has responded so far. I have heard that consulting is a demanding (and often thankless) job, but the idea of having something that you have some control over and knowing that there is a time limit, seems appealing. How are the specific expectations and job responsibilities handled - I'm thinking a contract will be involved, but is that something I create, or the company I would be consulting for? Also, any ballpark on what I should expect in terms of pay?
If your field has an related association that has local meetings you may want to try attending. Be prepared that others will be doing the same thing...fishing for clients. Sometimes your "competition" will need help and you can pick up gigs this way. If you identify a client that may need your help, you may need to write a proposal. It depends on the client if they want a written formal agreement. Pay depends on what your field is. I would try for an hourly rate at least double your current salary. You may get an idea by looking at the on-line job search sites where they have short term gigs with hourly rates.

Depending on your field, finding good paying clients may be harder than actually doing the consulting.
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Old 07-31-2015, 12:24 PM   #10
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Depending on your field, finding good paying clients may be harder than actually doing the consulting.
That was true for me. Much harder.
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Old 07-31-2015, 12:51 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Symplelife View Post
Thanks to everyone who has responded so far. I have heard that consulting is a demanding (and often thankless) job, but the idea of having something that you have some control over and knowing that there is a time limit, seems appealing. How are the specific expectations and job responsibilities handled - I'm thinking a contract will be involved, but is that something I create, or the company I would be consulting for? Also, any ballpark on what I should expect in terms of pay?
Best you write your own contract with liability disclaimers and such. Ask a friendly co-consultant or your accountant, pretty easy to do. Get familiar with typical clauses.

Can confirm the need for a statement of work / engagement letter. Typically you write it, client signs it (together with contract). Not necessary for interim type of jobs. That's simply an hourly rate + contract.

Hourly rates is equivalent your_former_job_cost x1.5 - x2 if you'll do what you did before. Obviously a gardener is different from a board level consultant / CEO coach.

It may take some getting used to if you've never done consulting before. It's not that difficult but some (social) aspects aren't always picked up if you worked as an employee before.

Best you'd get more specific if you want more specific advice
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Old 07-31-2015, 01:12 PM   #12
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To be more specific, this would be more suited for employee health and wellness, Human resources, mediation (employer and employee, employee and employee).
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Old 07-31-2015, 01:17 PM   #13
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So you would be an independent HR consultant? Right on.


If so you need to get heavily involved with the local (i.e. your clients) HR/benefits community if you aren't already well known.
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