Earlier this week one of my clients exposed to me that she felt like a fraud as a business consultant. She can’t be the only one. Right?!
If you’ve never felt like a fraud then don’t even bother reading the rest of this article.
However, if you’re trying to fight off the fraud demon in your head with a stick, then you’ll probably want to read on.
Feeling like a fraud may be one of the reasons why you’re not attracting enough clients at the moment.
Right now, you’re deep in thought with the formidable picture I’m painting. Just for the hell of it, let’s see if I’m close at all to the way you feel from time to time when dealing with clients.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you doubt your own abilities before going into a prospective client meeting?
- Do you sit and wonder as to whether or not you have what it really takes to get the results for your client?
- Do you cringe at the thought of people finding out who you really are? (Oh god, I hope you’re not Elvis!)
If the answer to any of the above is “yes”, then you’re suffering from a lack of self-confidence and ‘fake fraud syndrome’.
Ok, so I made the fraud syndrome up, but you have an unenviable task ahead of you.
Why? Because if you keep ‘deciding’ to feel the way that you do about your own skill set, then you’ll keep attracting mediocre clients that whinge and complain about paying their fees.
Anatomy of building your self-confidence as a business consultant
We are each energetic creatures. The moment you walk into a room you can tell if someone has been talking about you. It just feels different.
Right now you’re being whacked around by your own self-doubts and those self-doubts are being expressed energetically in each interaction you have with a prospect or an existing client.
Call it gut instinct. Call it intuition. Call it whatever you want, but your clients will pick up on it and start to question your abilities and there is no one else to blame but you.
How do you move on from this? Try these tips on for size:
1. Understand that timing is always perfect
We each attract particular individuals and clients into our lives when we most need them. I have found that a lot of my own clients have brought about realisations in my own life simply via the interactions I’ve had with them. They teach us as much as we teach them.
Simply put, you won’t convert clients that you aren’t ready to handle. Trust yourself, trust your ability and give it 110 percent all of the time.
2. Let Be and Let Go
I don’t believe that there is anyone in this world who has truly made it. I think that is completely unobtainable. We can all be better in various ways, but does that mean that we beat ourselves up if we aren’t where we want to be yet?
Absolutely not! If you were meant to be further ahead in your business or career than you are right now, you would be.
You’ve still got more to learn my little grasshopper before you move to the next step. Enjoy where you are right now and stop trying to fight against a natural progression in your careers journey.
3. Recognise where you’ve come from
A lot of people dismiss previous successes they’ve had in their careers. Make a list of all of your achievements to date — personal and work — and take stock of what you’ve achieved.
Look at the list and ask yourself honestly if you do or do not have what it truly takes to work with clients and feel good about yourself. If you still say that you don’t, then what is it going to take for you to feel better? Does it mean extra study, work experience or reading or research on the internet? Do whatever it takes.
I’ve also felt like a fraud in different parts of my life. It hurts at the time and is distressing not only to you but to those around you who see your real potential.
Dive in the deep end when it comes to working with each of your clients. Worst case scenario, you won’t have an answer to one of their questions.
Here’s a thought: simply say to them, “Instead of giving you an answer I’m unsure of, let me do some research and I’ll get back to you and we can go from there.”
People would much prefer that you be honest than be a spin doctor. This approach will not only buy you extra time but you will have also earned the respect from your client.
Without truly addressing the way that you feel in relation to your work, limbo land is going to be your permanent residence. (I hear it’s cold there this time of year, oh and quite lonely!)
So, to answer my question, are business consultants a bunch of frauds? Hell yes and hell no. Which one are you?
As for my client, after much hard work she no longer feels like she did and clients have started chasing her instead of her chasing them.
Ben Angel is the author of the brand new controversial book, ‘Sleeping Your Way to The Top in Business — The Ultimate Guide to Attracting & Seducing More Customers’. Grab your copy today by visiting www.benangel.com.au