Ask HN: How do I start my own consulting firm? | Hacker News

Here are some things to consider about consulting:Sales/Selling is the last thing on your list and salesperson is only a maybe. Reverse all of your priorities because selling and relationships are the most difficult things to master for a consulting company and you will die without those skills.In consulting, tech talent < sales/relationship talent. In fact, if you’re great at the latter go ahead and get started now because there are lots of great tech people who don’t want to do it and will come work for you on a nice contract rate.To give you an example of this I once worked with a consultant who was a technical rock star, and another consultant who was supposed to be technical but was actually pretty below average. The below average guy was more successful because he was great when talking with the customers and they loved him. He knew enough to talk through problems at a high level, explained things well, and made them feel comfortable that things we’re on the right track. If he didn’t know something, no problem, he just went and found someone with the answer.Besides those soft skills he knew how to set and manage expectations. You may be used to the best results winning, but if you don’t manage and then exceed expectations it doesn’t matter. People love you when they expect 80 out of 100 and you deliver 88. They will not be happy and often fire you if expecting 100 out of 100 and you deliver 92. You will wonder how you just lost to a competitor who is not “as good” as you.Even if you have pretty good soft skills, do you want to spend time constantly using them? I thought you liked the tech side? If you like both then great because someone has to spends tons of time doing it to sell, maintain, and expand the work and your success depends on how good they are at it.For many people this will all be hard to believe, or they think it’s exaggerated, or that it’s easy to just hire someone to do it. That’s fine, I hope you have great success. Drop me a line in a couple years to say how things turned out.

Source: Ask HN: How do I start my own consulting firm? | Hacker News