Stuart Armstrong, the CEO of a digital marketing company in New York City, posted a video on YouTube. Not a promotional message, though. Apparently Stu, a successful executive, always contemplated life as a stand-up comic. Evidence being his seven-minute debut at the Gotham Comedy Club, captured for posterity online.
Striding the stage, Stu intones that his stand-up routine was the culmination of a comedy class in which he learned the importance of timing. “Timing,” he repeats. Then he pauses, looks at the crowd and admits “I’m 58 years-old and this is the first time I’ve tried stand-up. How’s that for f*ng timing?” The crowd roars.
Why? Partly because it’s a well-crafted line, delivered with precision. And partly because Stu is up there on stage leading by example.
We all know that the biggest barrier impeding our pursuit of happiness, joy and success is ourselves. Simply casting off our mental shackles and taking a few bold leaps could transform our consulting practices. Or our lives.
The fact is it’s never too late. No matter where you are in your day, your year, your career or your life, you can embark on a courageous mission or tackle an audacious task. Not every leap has to look like Evel Kneivel’s attempt at the Grand Canyon. For some folks on some days simply picking up the phone to call a prospect is a business-altering accomplishment.
What bold leaps can you take on? Below are a few thought starters for your consulting business:
- Get into consulting full time
- Renew relationships with a prospect who’s fallen out of touch
- Adopt a ritual that will enhance your clients’ experience on every project
- Get help with a business-building best practice that you’ve read about but struggled to implement (e.g., asking for referrals)
- Make one more (or your first) phone call today, this week, this month, or this year
- Change your pricing model to use higher-margin structures
- Invest in one-on-one mentoring
- Learn (or vastly improve) a critical skill such as speaking or writing
- Take a bold, controversial, public stand on an issue in your industry
- Capture your knowledge in a diagnostic that will inform others (and attract prospects)
- Improve and test your “Fishing Line”
Here’s one more for you: Post a comment on a blog. This blog. Briefly describe a leap you made—whether it appears bold in retrospect or not—that had a meaningful impact on your business. Reading about your experience could be exactly what another consultant needs to jumpstart his practice, so take a minute and post your thoughts now. (Alternatively, post a bold leap you commit to taking soon, and tell me why.)
Text and images are © 2019 David A. Fields, all rights reserved.