The Three Challenges of a Solo Professional’s Practice

Our careers as solo professionals go through stages and each stage has its challenges. This article highlights three of the most common challenges.

Challenge Number One – Getting Clients: Feast-or-Famine and Barely Making It Financially

As a solo professional, you originally got into your area of expertise because you love and value what you do. You started off working for others but then you realized you wanted to go solo and create a private practice (or you always knew this was what you wanted to do and knew you had to spend time paying our dues).

So, you did and you soon discovered that loving what you do and being an expert at it wasn’t enough to build a full practice. Your first challenge as a solo professional is trying to get clients, trying to get your name out there, trying to bring in the income you need.

Early on, you suffer from the feast-or-famine syndrome which goes like this: You get several leads at a time and things start looking up financially. So you concentrate on serving these clients but stop doing the things that attracted them in the first place. The next thing you know, there are no new leads coming in and it’s back to not earning enough.

The problem is that, while you were learning your area of expertise, you were never taught how to attract clients and get all the clients you need to fill your practice. You have not yet learned a system for generating a consistent flow of clients – especially the kind of clients you love to work with in your practice. The answer to this challenge of getting clients is to learn, develop and implement a simple, practical and replicable system for attracting them. This system requires you to know exactly who you want to serve, where to find them and how to communicate with them.

Challenge Number Two – Maxed Out and Burned Out

Once you develop your system and implement it consistently, you will get to the stage of having a full practice. What a pleasure this is when you finally achieve it and you are delighted at how effortless it has become! Getting clients is no longer a mystery or a struggle.

The challenge comes in you are maxed out in the number of clients you are seeing, your income has hit a plateau, your expenses are going up and there’s no other way to make more money other than seeing more clients – and this only leads to burn out.

The problem is that as long as you only provide one-on-one direct service, your income will always be limited to how many clients you can see. The answer to this challenge of maxed out and burnt out is to create additional income streams within your practice which are based on what you already know – income streams that provide leveraged or passive income.

Leveraged income is the kind of income where we maximize a direct service hour. An example of this is would be seeing a group of people rather than just one person in an hour – i.e. group coaching rather than individual coaching, group therapy rather than individual therapy. Another example of leveraged income would be teaching a workshop or doing psycho-educational classes.

Passive income is the kind of income where you create something once and then continue to earn income from what you have created over and over. A basic but well-known example of this would be writing a book, publishing it and then receiving royalties from it. A book may not be in your realm of possibility, but there are many different ways to create a product which you can sell and create passive or residual income.

Challenge Number Three – Feeling the Call to Do More Professionally but Not Sure What to Do Next

You will reach a point in your practice/business when you know you are ready to step into a bigger role. You know you have a larger message besides the work you do in direct service to your clients and you want to reach a wider audience, make a greater contribution and have a bigger impact.

This might be a leadership role, a mentoring role or a trainer of others in your profession. It may mean writing a book, becoming a speaker or a media figure. Or it may even mean taking your knowledge and expertise and applying it in an entirely new and different way and create a whole new venture. No matter what it is, it’s the next step in the evolution of your practice and it’s important to give yourself permission to play bigger.

The problem is that you may have to deal with that small voice in your head that tries to convince you to remain at the level at which you are comfortable. Or, you may have to deal with not knowing exactly what the next step will look like.

The answer to these challenges is to get guidance from someone who has already walked this path. Getting coaching can be of great value in developing a new mindset of success, in exploring the options that are right for you and determining the steps to achieve your new goal.

As a solo professional, you need answers that will address the challenges of each stage of your practice and that will help you consistently get all the clients you want, create the income you desire and/or get the reco

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Solo Professional – It’s Much More Than You Think

Our workforce is changing and being your own boss is in, of course, often it’s not by choice, as circumstances beyond individual control present such options, and are chosen by those who seek a rewarding career and/or gainful employment as a professional representative for a larger corporation or rep’ing for several. It turns out that a good many solo-professionals are able to work from home office and are much happier than ever before.

Indeed, as with anything there are positives and drawbacks, still the positives for solo-professionals tend to outweigh any of the real hardships to conquer. In this article, I’d like to address and discuss the ins and outs, things you need to know before becoming a solo professional to make your transition smoother, I’d also discuss ideas, and concepts on how to make your workflow more efficient, and get more out of being your own boss and accelerating your career.

You see, as the Founder of the Online Think Tank, I see these trends and have been watching them since the late 70s. As a Franchisor, I also noted our many consultants and key vendors operating as solo professionals. It worked, it was efficient, and we could get more done, faster, utilizing such folks on our team. Today, I bring to you my observations, experience, and a few forwarding looking concepts as this future continues to unfold and evolve.

Smooth Transition

Being self employed is a mindset, you have to realize that you make all the rules, and you must focus on your objectives. From now on killing time at work is not an option. Secondly, there is a time for work and play, but you must make that separation in your life and understand things will be different from here on out, and lastly, you need a plan, this isn’t going to happen by itself, and nothing good in life is going to be easy – life just doesn’t work that way, of course, you already know that – so don’t kid yourself here.

Maximize Efficiency

You need a strategy to ensure that you complete your tasks, and never assign a task to your to do list that you really don’t need to do, for if you do, you will be wasting your time, and time is what you must leverage to win. Think about production, systems, and strength of your knowledge – add value at every turn and systematize your work flow for maximum performance.

If you do these things, you can make it as a solo-professional, others are doing it, and they are winning in their careers, so please consider all this and think on it.

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