Consulting Toolkit: Courage


It’s easy to think small right now. The economy isn’t pretty: clients say no or wait weeks and months getting to yes. Salaried consulting jobs have disappeared, perhaps forever. Personal assets? We’re in nosedive territory. Being conservative and cautious is an understandable by-product.

It doesn’t however, lead to making great leaps with your consulting practice.

The solution is courage. The courage to trust yourself (and your team) to continually develop your practice to suit your talents. The courage to care about your clients and bettering their condition. The courage to act while your competition is blinded by indecision and fear.

Clients still have work they need done right now—and the best opportunities will go to those who have the courage to:

Exquisitely focus on the results you uniquely deliver. Verbalize your niche, your “white space” and cast a tight net to those who most need what you have to offer.

Just say no. When a project—however enticing financially or to your ego—isn’t right for your talents, refer it to someone else. Your job is to spend your time where you can have the highest, best impact. Don’t waste it on work that someone less seasoned would do well.

When you say yes, mean it. Once you’ve agreed to a pivotal project, pour your head, heart and soul into it. Yes, it may mean some sleepless nights, some conflict over new directions and some worry over your bank account. But do it anyway.

If you need another visual, remember Canadian figure skater Joannie Rochette’s emotional performances that brought her to the Olympic medals platform.

Real winners put it all on the line.



  • Robin Dickinson

    I agree Rochelle.

    Having a strong "NO" is essential to profitable business development.

    Saying "YES" to the wrong business may generate some much needed cash-flow, but will erode your business-building capabilities in the not too distant future.

    Far better to hold your focus and put massive effort into your financially worthwhile target prospects and growing share-of-wallet with existing clients.

    To strong business growth,

    Robin 🙂

  • Rochelle Moulton

    Well said Robin. Saying no can be very hard–but we all know in our gut when to do it!

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