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Insider Tips, Tools, and Consulting Resources for Any Consultant Branching Out on Their Own

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Published:
July 20, 2021
Reading Time:
7 minutes
Gizela Snyman
Gizela has almost two decades of experience within the Digital sphere and eagerly awaits the day she can be cloned so she can finally get everything on her daily to-do list done

Yes, working hard is an essential key to success. However, it is also important to work smart. We live in an age of information sharing, so there are plenty of consulting tips, tricks, software, and tools out there on the internet – a lot of them are even available for free. Just because you are consulting independently doesn’t mean you are alone. Online consulting resources are the new colleagues. In fact, they have a slight edge over colleagues since you can keep coming back to them every minute of every day for help, and they won’t get annoyed.

The 7 Best Consulting Resources for Independent Consultants

Consulting is a fast-paced, jam-packed career choice. You will often have meetings all day, so where would you find the time to do the administration, research and reporting that your clients require? Luckily, there are some resources to help you with this:

  • Chandoo
  • ConsultingMag
  • Feedly
  • CaseInterview.com
  • Consultport
  • SlideShare
“Every Year in consulting is like three years in the corporate world because you have multiple clients and multiple issues – you grow so much.” – Indra Nooyi

Chandoo

When becoming an independent consultant, managing your own accounting and bookkeeping as well as being able to do financial evaluations of companies is expected. To do this effectively, you need to be a master at Excel. Chandoo is a free website that offers resources, templates, and beginner and advanced level Excel courses.

ConsultingMag

As you might’ve guessed from the name, ConsultingMag is an online consulting magazine. It is a great resource to use to stay up to date with industry trends. In addition, the website is filled with consulting-related news, rankings, company profiles, informative webinars, and potential jobs. Better yet, it is all available for free.


Feedly

Feedly is a website highlighting insights from news sites and blogs that you have flagged as relevant to yourself. It is an easy and efficient way of staying up to date with worldwide news, industry happenings, and client updates.


CaseInterview.com

CaseInterview.com is a good place for any consultant that needs to brush up on their pitch and interview skills. Here one will find case interview-based tips, videos, coaching resources, and articles. But just as a heads-up; you do have to pay for access to this website and its resources.


Consultport

Consultport is an online consulting platform. Here consultants can read consulting-related blog posts or use the platform to find exciting projects to consult on. They also offer several tools and courses to help you be the best consultant you can be. You can also find courses on consulting topics to support you on Consultport Academy


SlideShare

Slideshare is a website where people can upload presentations, documents, or infographics on topics that they are experts in or just have a passion for. Presentations provide a concise summary of a topic. This can be an excellent place to go if looking for inspiration or information about a specific topic.

Must-Have Consulting Tools

Apart from the consulting resources needed, there are also a few consulting tools. You may be asking yourself, what is the difference between a tool and a resource? A tool is used to create something, whereas a resource is used to learn about something. Here are some of the consulting tools we recommend having under your independent consulting belt:

Consulting resources, Insider Tips, Tools, and Consulting Resources for Any Consultant Branching Out on Their Own
  • Cushion or Asana: a tool for project management
  • Salesforce: a customer relationship management tool
  • Grammarly: a tool to ensure that there are no errors in your writing
  • GoToWebinar: a paid webinar tool for presentations and tutorials
  • Zoom: a free tool for easy online meetings with worldwide clients
  • Acuity Scheduling: a tool for clients to use to schedule appointments with you
  • Google Analytics: a tool for tracking website analytics
  • CoSchedule: a scheduling tool for keeping track of marketing efforts
  • 9Lenses: a tool for the management of your consulting framework and an easy client insight delivery and sharing platform
  • DropBox: an easy tool to share files with clients
  • DrumUp: a tool for managing marketing via social media
  • Mailchimp: an email tool for sending out standardized bulk emails
  • 1Password: a tool to manage and store any client passwords shared with you
  • FileStage: a tool for review, feedback, and approval of files
  • Crystal: an AI tool that predicts a client’s personality and helps you respond in a similar relatable manner

Business resources

Apart from specific consulting resources needed when becoming an independent consultant, you will need business resources. These business resources help you along your path of entrepreneurship. First, you need financial resources in the form of funding to get your consulting business up and running. Second, you need human resources in the form of employees that you may outsource accounting, marketing, or bookkeeping too. Third, you need educational resources in the form of industry knowledge so that you can be competitive with other independent consultants and consulting firms. Fourth, you need physical resources such as a place to work and the equipment necessary to work effectively. Lastly, you need emotional resources in the form of support systems for when times are tough.

Independent Consulting Tips

Branching out by yourself can be scary, but here are some consulting tips from independent consultants who have already taken the plunge:

  1. Cast your fears aside and do it
  2. Set aside money to fall back on
  3. Specialize your services
  4. Time management is key
  5. Develop a personal brand
  6. Balance work-life carefully
  7. Enjoy your well-earned breaks
  8. Go independent for the right reasons (not just for the money)
  9. Make the most out of it

All of these resources are a wealth of knowledge, guidance, and answers to any burning questions you may have. We suggest implementing these tips, tricks, and tools to give yourself an edge over your competition.