David A. Fields is the Managing Director of Ascendant Consortium, a group of elite, independent business consultants whose clients span the Fortune 500. He is the author of the new bestselling book The Irresistible Consultant's Guide to Winning Clients: 6 Steps to Unlimited Clients & Financial Freedom.
Named one of Advertising Age magazine’s “Marketing Top 100,” Fields has worked with consulting firms and individual consultants all over the world who are anxious to grow their practices and earn a steadier, more reliable income.
He has been featured in Bloomberg Businessweek, USA Today, CNNMoney and The Huffington Post, writes a monthly column for IndustryWeek and Consulting magazines. Fields is a sought-after speaker to national and international executive audiences.
- Who is David Fields?
David considers himself an “everyday hero”. After business school, David started in corporate America doing sales before getting into consulting and spinning off his own firm with a partner. After four weeks, his partner jumped ship and David found himself with a company that had virtually no clients. Some timely advice from a colleague which revealed David’s innate ability to sell consulting services changed the course of David’s business.
- What makes you different?
David is willing to persevere and try again, even in the face of failure. Be willing to find help, ask for it and keep trying.
David’s philosophy is that all the answers come from outside your life. As a consultant, it doesn’t matter what you want to do. It’s not about you, it’s about the clients.
- The Rise of the Independent Professional
There is an abundance of role models for kids that are 15, 16, and 17 years old that have been successful in business that is driving a generation of independence.
- Why do so many consultants have challenges landing clients?
Consultants are too focused on themselves instead of paying attention to the market. It’s not about all the things you can do, it’s about what the market needs you to solve.
When you are very specific with what you do, people will call you first if they have that specific problem. You have to pick a problem that is pervasive enough and expensive enough that people want to solve.
- Why do consultants undercharge?
In many cases, people are undercharging for their services. When you charge higher fees, you have the room to do whatever you need to get the client the best possible result.
Whether or not you are undercharging is the hardest question to answer. Can you create a higher value? If so, you can charge larger amounts.
Clients aren’t paying you by the hour, they are paying you for a specific result. You don’t charge the same for every client.
Have standardized systems and approaches, not a standard list of services. Tailor your solution to your client to fit like a glove. Discovering what is driving your client better than the even know themselves will make you the obvious choice.
Before you can make a sale and get more visibility, you have to make a bigger impact.
Reference: The Irresistible Consultant's Guide to Winning Clients: 6 Steps to Unlimited Clients & Financial Freedom, David Fields
- David’s Takeaway
Listen to the voice and manage it, address and test its concerns. We all have that voice but the question is: does it scare you or do you use it to help you move forward?
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