12 Questions to ask when developing your consultancy business plan

With the number of jobs dwindling in the formal sector, and the emergence of outsourcing, many professionals are finding that using their expertise as a consultant is the way to go. Being a consultant offers several benefits: you are your own boss, you can set your hours as well as the clients you offer your services to. However, when developing a business plan for your consulting enterprise, it's also vital to ask yourself a few questions to ensure that your business gets off the ground in the most successful way.

Ask yourself:

1. What skills and experience do I bring to the business?

2. What is my unique selling point? What do I bring to customers that's different to the other players in my field of expertise?

3. What legal structure for my business will I use? Will I maintain sole proprietorship, or will I form a limited liability company?

4. How will my company's business records be maintained? This is very important for those who are not financially savvy.

5. What insurance coverage will be needed? This question is also crucial if only to protect you from heavy litigation expenses.

6. What equipment or supplies will I need? Who are the most competitive suppliers available?

7. How and when will I compensate myself?

8. What are my resources?

9. What financing will I need?

10. Where will my business be located?

11. What will I name my business?

12. Who will be my primary customers? How will I let them know of my services?


Fiona Mati is the CEO of the Youth Interactive Portal for Enterprise (Yipe.org), which hosts an online portal that provides East African youth entrepreneurs with free information and resources so that they are in a better position to access finance, learn about new business opportunities, and can easily register their businesses. The portal is the first of its kind in East Africa specifically targeting the youth, and provides free business s...

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