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Becoming a Management Consultant

Becoming a Management Consultant
22 December 2014 John Moore

In the pursuit of improved performance, cost-savings and increased productivity more and more organisations are turning to management consultants. As a result, more people are asking “how can I become a management consultant?”

Demand for Management Consultants

Whilst many organisations seek to outsource assignments to external management consultants, many organisations especially within the public sector are turning, to the use of internal consultants. This is creating a demand for high quality consultants capable of delivering high impact solutions.

How do I become a consultant?

This is perhaps one of the most frequent questions that I am asked. I remember being asked that question by one aspiring management consultant called Dennis Ling. Based in Cape Town, South Africa and also working for Singapore Airlines, Dennis was one of the first to register for Exponential Training’s Certificate in Management Consulting Essentials back in 2008. I am proud to report that Dennis’s career literally took off – he is now Director (Asia Pacific) for the global consulting firm ICF International.

Do I need a degree to become a consultant?

Whilst it is true that the majority entering a consultancy career are graduates, it is not essential, especially for internal consulting roles. In my opinion, whatever qualifications you have, organisations are more interested in your ability to develop and implement cost-effective, pragmatic solutions. Industry and/or technical knowledge, expertise and experience are highly valued and provide credibility. If you do not have a business studies related degree or a relevant technical degree, then there are other ways of getting qualified (see below).

What are organisations looking for in a consultant?

They are looking that you have the ability to deliver results. They are looking for people who operate ethically and with integrity. They are looking for people who can analyse a situation and identify practical solutions. They are looking for consultants who can communicate clearly and concisely whether in a written report, face-to-face or through a presentation.

How much can I expect to earn from a career in consulting?

This is a difficult one to answer. Full-time starting salaries especially with larger consulting practices are likely to be around £28-30,000 for a junior consultant. And of course the ‘sky is the limit’ at the top end of the market. If you are looking to operate as an individual consultant, possibly as an associate or in your own consulting practice, daily consulting rates range from £300 to £1000+: this is the option that Drilona Emrullahu chose – she is now running her own international consulting practice.  As an internal consultant, for example within a local council or authority, then you can expect a salary from £30,000 upwards.

Getting Qualified as a Management Consultant

If you are looking to embark on a career as a consultant or adviser or to further develop your career, I recommend undertaking one of Exponential Training’s Professional Consulting distance learning qualifications.

Level 5 Professional Consulting:

This qualification provides an introduction to management consulting. It is ideal for you if you are considering a move in to consulting from a functional discipline, or if you want to obtain an introduction to the skills and knowledge needed in the field of management consultancy.

You will learn about:

  • The consultancy role
  • The consultancy cycle
  • The client relationship
  • Communication for consultants
  • Effective project delivery
  • Structured, knowledge, research and analysis

Learn More

The Level 7 Professional Consulting:

This qualification will develop your knowledge, skills and behaviours to operate as a management consultant. It is ideal if you want a more in depth understanding of management consulting.

You will learn about:

  • Professional practice
  • Professional development
  • Managing consultancy interventions
  • Organising structure and culture
  • Entry & diagnosis
  • Interpersonal interaction
  • Group techniques
  • Communicating with impact
  • Effective project management
  • Tools and techniques for effective consulting

Learn More

John Moore has over 20 years experience of training and developing Managers, Coaches, Consultants and businesses. As Managing Director of Exponential Training, John researches, speaks, blogs and writes about how to improve performance. He also designs and delivers engaging, fun and interactive learning programmes. John is a Fellow Chartered Manager and has worked with managers and organisations in over 20 different countries.


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