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The Power HABIT of Successful Consultants

By Michael Zipursky

What kind of habits do you have in your life?

We have all kinds of habits – some good, some not so good, some may be bad.

As a consultant, if you’re focused on growth, if you want to grow your business, to grow your revenues, then you must have one very important habit as part of your business, a habit that you do almost without thinking of doing that it becomes so natural.


You’re doing it almost everyday if not everyday, and you’re doing it because it clearly helps you to grow your business.

What is that habit? Maybe you guessed it but that habit is working on your marketing and business development.

The most successful consultants, even when they’re at the top of the highest level of success, they don’t sit back.

You see, many consultants believe that as consultants we’re in the consulting business, but I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again.

Our Real Business

As consultants we’re not in the consulting business.

We’re in the business of marketing? Why? If we don’t have clients then it doesn’t matter how good we are at what we do.

It doesn’t matter what our expertise is. We don’t have the opportunity then to consult, to actually help our clients, to serve and provide value to them. The only way to actually have clients to consult for, to do consulting, is to get clients, which means we need to do business development and marketing in order to get those clients.

That’s why we’re really in the business of marketing even if you don’t consider yourself a marketer or a salesperson. These are strengths. These are areas that you must develop to be successful as a consultant.

The Referral Well

Even if you’ve found that maybe your business has coasted along for quite a while just through referrals in your network, that’s great for you.

That’s wonderful. Enjoy it and appreciate it, but also realize that that will not continue forever, especially if you’re newer to the business.

You might enjoy several years even of business like that.

But at one point, even if you don’t expect it – probably when you least expect it – your business will dry up. You’re going to have to run like crazy and potentially feel stressed out and not know what to do to get more clients.

The best way to remedy that situation is to be prepared, to start taking action on that now.

Growth Focus

The most successful consultants, even when they’re at the top of the highest level of success, they don’t sit back.

They don’t just forget about marketing and business development.

They are always taking action to further their brand, to do more marketing and to ensure that their pipeline is full with opportunities.

You, right now, as a consultant, must really give thought to your own business development and your marketing.

How much time are you spending right now, each and everyday, each and every week, moving your business forward by marketing it, by promoting it, by working on developing more business?

If you’re like most consultants, you’re probably not spending enough time doing that.

Having the RIGHT Focus

If you are spending time doing it, you may not be spending that time on the right things.

It’s critical that you find out as quickly as possible what are the right types of things.

What are the right steps, the right actions, the right tactics, the right strategies, for you? That’s critical. It’s an important distinction.

Just because one type of tactic is working for someone else, just because some guru online is saying that webinars are the latest thing or social media or direct mail or whatever it is – all those things are good and I’m not going against any of them because all those tactics can work or they can all fall flat on their face.

Marketing for Results

The most important thing is to figure out what type of marketing, what type of business development, what type of actions and promotions are going to be best for you, for your industry, for your type of client that will resonate and that your clients will be most likely to respond to.

You’re not playing just a game of hope marketing where you hope that things will work out or that because maybe you are good at what you do that somehow your ideal clients will find you, because they won’t.

Once you figure that out, once you have clarity around that, then you want to make sure that your marketing and your business development becomes a habit, something that you are doing each and everyday, or at least you’re scheduling specific amount of time to work on each and every week.

It needs to happen consistently. It doesn’t matter if you land a big project. It doesn’t matter if you’re just getting started or if you’re later in your business.

You always want to have your marketing at play. You always want to ensure that you have a pipeline full of opportunities.

If one client project changes or if something that you thought was going to work doesn’t actually come through, then what do you do?

Be Proactive

If you are proactive about it, then you don’t have to worry because there will always be new opportunities coming to you.

When you get out there enough you’re taking action and you’re following up so even though some potential buyers aren’t going to be ready to buy from you right now, they may be in a few weeks or a few months or a few years.

If and when you’re doing consistent action – and I really hope that you start doing this right away, that you take this as a wake up call to do so – when you do that consistently what happens is you have enough people in your pipeline, enough potential business, that you’ll always have opportunities because you’ll always have different people at different stages ready to buy as time goes on.

It’s a really important process to ensure that you are going through, that you’re not sitting back and just waiting.

You’re not playing just a game of hope marketing where you hope that things will work out or that because maybe you are good at what you do that somehow your ideal clients will find you, because they won’t.

Maybe if they have – if you’ve been lucky enough that they have – it doesn’t mean that they will continue to do so.

Sound the Alarm

Consider this a warning call. Consider this an opportunity to really realize that to be successful as a consultant, it’s not just about your skills.

It’s not just about your experience. It’s about taking consistent and proactive action on your business development and on your marketing, and that just taking action on those isn’t the only part.

Taking Action

Make sure that you’re doing the right type of marketing but the other is that you’re doing it consistently.

I want to encourage you to make your marketing, to make your business development, not something that you do just when you have time but something that you do that it becomes an actual habit for you.

The same way that you wake up and brush your teeth and the same way that you brush your teeth again before you go to bed, the same way that you have a cup of coffee or a glass of water in the morning.

That’s a habit. Your marketing, your business development, also needs to become a habit if you really want to become successful in this business.

Take those steps. Find the right type of marketing, and then take action on it consistently.

Do those two things and greater success is really just around the corner for you.

2 thoughts on “The Power HABIT of Successful Consultants

  1. Vadim Batkin says:

    Well, a great article! But how to find the right type of marketing, that’s the most interesting question? 🙂
    I would suggest to test various marketing channels (in accordance with your target clientele) step by step and measure the results. The idea is to find a channel that you can manage and measure.

  2. Nuel Effiong says:

    do you mind me sharing your contents? I just love them!

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