Consultancy is a good career option for many leaving the Armed Forces, but is it right for you?
What is consultancy?
A consultant is hired by an organisation to help with a task or project it is unable to complete on its own.
Why former officers can be great consultants
- Experienced at project management.
- Experienced at working independently.
- Ex-military Personnel are respected in the civilian workplace.
- It can offer similar rewards to being in the military, providing dynamic and challenging opportunities.
How to choose your specialism
- Choose a specialism that interests you – look at your skills and experiences to help decide.
- Understand your potential client’s needs, and see if your expertise could help.
- While in the Armed Forces use your training credits for project and commercial management courses, so you are business ready when you leave.
How to find work
- Be clear on the support you can provide an organisation.
- Ask your network of friends, families and business contacts for leads.
- Develop your network on LinkedIn and attend networking events, including those run by the OA.
- Research online what industries are hiring consultants.
- Cold call and email companies that you would like to work for, or you know have opportunities.
Why consulting is not for everyone
- The lifestyle and pressures can be similar to being in the military, and you may want something different in your new career.
- Often involves lots of travelling, and spending time away from family, sometimes for long periods.
- The income can be irregular, with quiet and busy periods.
- If you are self-employed you will often be looking for new work, and be responsible for your tax and pension.
- You have to keep on good terms with clients, and some can be very demanding.
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