This post may contain editorial samples and/or affiliate links. We may earn a commission on your sales.
There are different reasons and types of consultants one can hire. Before you do hire someone though, you should do your homework on them and their company.
There are tons of different types of consulting services out there. You can consult a doctor for a medical issue. Perhaps you have a legal issue of some kind and need to consult with a lawyer.
If you have a good or bad experience with a company you may consult with their customer service department as well.
What is the true definition of a consultant?
Consulting is the business of providing expert advice to a specific group of people. So what is a consultant? A consultant is someone who has some level of expertise that a particular group of people finds valuable, and people within that group are willing to pay the consultant to access their expertise.
There are 3 types of consulting:
- Management Consulting
- Corporate Consulting
- Independent Consulting
So you decided you need to hire a consultant. Now it's the time to get into your homework and searching for the right consultant. Here are 6 things to consider
You want to know what their experience in the area you are hiring them for. Example, say you have to hire a lawyer. An important thing to look into is their success rate and their experience in working with cases that are similar to yours.
Everything in life comes down to money. An important thing to ask is about their fees. The last thing you want is to be hit with hidden fees that you are obligated to pay. Talk these out before you sign a contract.
Speaking of fees, the contract details. You want everything and anything spelled out in writing. That makes both parties crystal clear on what to expect and in what time frame. Do you want a full on hands on consultant, or do you just want someone you can call when you have a question?
Look to see if they have a rating or feedback online by previous clients. Some companies are listed on the BBB. That's a good start. Ask if they have any past clients you can speak to that can vouch for their work.
Research or ask if there is anything they excel in. We all are great at something. Find out what they are great at.
Open communication is key in general in life. When you are talking to them in your initial meeting take note about how open they are in communication. Do they pause and really have to think of the answers to your questions? Are they totally open and transparent? Also it's important to ask and have it in your contract that how often and in what method you communicate to each other. This all depends on the type of consultant and the service they are providing but it's something that should be discussed.