Great! You’ve decided to book a consultation with a business consultant, lawyer, accountant, web developer, marketing expert, or some other consultant. Great you are on your way to hitting your target goals faster. But make sure self-sabotage doesn’t ruin the experience. Here are the top 5 mistakes to avoid so you can leave your consultation ahead of the game.
#5. Misusing the time & Monologing
- A big mistake is taking too much time talking about the past or explaining how past mistakes happened. You are coming to a consultation to get answers, direction, and clarity.
- Think about it. If you bring something to a repair person, do they need to know the highlight of how it broke, or do they need a long explanation and extra nonsubstantive details in order to fix the problem?
#4. Feeling Defensive & Feeling the Need to Validate
- You are smart enough to know that you need help. Don’t get caught up in feeling defensive or spend time validating your past missteps. Likely you are not the first person to run into the problems you’re experiencing and you’re consultant is not there to judge you.
- There is no judgment. The consultation is exclusively to access the current state and figure a way forward.
- You are about to get some invaluable advice. Instead of clearing your schedule for a phone consultation, grabbing a paper and pen, and getting ready to soak in the knowledge, you’re driving, talking on the phone, texting, or have your mind on other things. If you aren’t prioritizing your needs, what is the likelihood your consultant will get the relevant details and be able to share solutions? Is your consultant likely to take your business more seriously than you do if you don’t take the meetings seriously?
#2. Not having a budget
- An entrepreneur is someone who takes their idea and finances it with their personal cash investment in order to receive their money back at a profit.
- You know “you get what you pay for” so regardless of what the services cost you should have an amount allocated so you can have a discussion about what various possibilities are available in your price range. If you haven’t set aside any funds, consider doing that before setting a consultation.
- If everyone could come up with a good idea a make one-million dollars with no money, wouldn’t everyone be millionaires?
#1. Not Knowing What you Want or Not Listening to the Expertise You Came to Hear
- Have you visualized what your goals look like? What does the end result look like? There are some things you know you would want and others you know you wouldn’t. Take time to get clarity before your consultation so you can use the session to build a solid plan forward.
- On the other hand, don’t be so set in your ways that you can’t explore with a consultant their recommendations. A wise person once said, “the wiser you get, the more you know there’s more you don’t know”. You are coming for expert advice. Don’t lose sight of that by digging your heels in about what you want to the point that you get so stuck you can’t move forward with progressive recommendations. Be prepared to openly listen and factor into your plan the unknown.
So now that you have the top 5 think of how you can go into your next expert consultation ready, prepared to share, prepared to listen, focus, come with goals, know your investment, and see how your experts’ recommendations can help you get to your finish line faster than going it alone.