Stay true to the cause

Consulting can give you the freedom to do anything you want. Take Fridays off. Be home for your kids. See matinees. Take your aging parent to the doctor’s office. Semi-retire. Travel the world. But are you really staying true to the cause?

IT consultant Alex Williams notes that he originally aimed to take Fridays off (link expired) and meet some other goals. Still, he often finds himself working Fridays. But he notes:

What I didn’t fully understand – and it didn’t take long to figure out – was that I was the one and only person who could mess with that dream. I was the only one who could alter it, and I did.

If your consulting business isn’t aligned with your dreams and goals, take some time to re-focus. Sometimes, you just need to ask yourself what’s important. I know I’ve fallen prey to the entrepreneurial trap before. For example, when I came home from the hospital with my first baby, I got a dream call from a reporter who wanted to interview me. I started thinking about prepping for the interview…then realized that my four-day-old baby needed me more. It was hard to step back from such an opportunity. But I realized that, 10 years before, I’d got into consulting so I could have work-life balance.

Do you struggle with focusing on your true consulting goals?

Andrea says:

Sue, thank you for sharing such honest comments with us. What courage you have! You started a business, had a baby, kept that business going, moved to a new town….Wow! You may be struggling with balance, but you’re obviously taking charge of your destiny, not watching things happen to you. I can tell you’re going to wow them in your new town.

Sue says:

Yes, Andrea, I DO struggle to stay true to my goals. I’ve recently had my first baby (well, 9 months ago… but that’s pretty recent in terms of a career… not so recent in terms of infant development). In the past nine months I’ve lost all my pre-baby clients, gained new ones, lost those again by moving to Victoria, and now I’m trying to find new ones. My confidence and focus has been severely shaken by the demands and adjustments of becoming a mother, and yet I persist… I have just opened new office space, and I am going to start networking again. What drives me to it? I’m not really certain. Perhaps just a conviction that my business ideas are useful to potential clients. Perhaps I’m driven by the need to avoid working for people I hate, or more positively, I want the opportunity to meet gads of people I grow to love.