Whether you’re team #GreatResignation or not, you’ve thought about working for yourself. You’re smart, so you like the idea of a low overhead business because you know it won’t cost much money to launch.
You’ve even watched videos and read posts that made you feel like coaching would be a good choice for you.
…if you ever actually start your own business.
But there’s something those webinars and Instagram posts didn’t tell you…
If you’re not already a certified coach, it will take years to replace your salary with coaching income.
If you like the idea of helping people by using what you already know, you may actually want to be a consultant.
…you just don’t realize it yet.
Truth is, consulting is a much faster way to make job-replacing income.
Consultants only need 3 years of experience in a field to get clients who pay thousands from Day 1. That’s it. 3 years. No coaching certification or training needed.
And, yes, I’m about to show you how.
I decided to skip writing a long intro section to explain coaching vs consulting. Instead, I’m going straight into the money. If you’re thinking about leaving your job, we need to talk money.
But, I’ll still point out differences between coaching vs consulting along the way.
You ready? Good.
BTW, you may want to take notes.
Let’s talk money
There are many limitations around how much a coach can make — and even more limitations for a new coach.
But, new consultants (who follow my advice) charge at least $2,000 per month, per client. At least. This is pretty impossible for a new coach to do, for two major reasons.
Reason 1: coaches get paid by the hour. Hourly pay is the business-owner ghetto.
Reason 2: coaches only get paid when they’re in an actual coaching session. So everything else, they do for free.Hourly pay is the business-owner ghetto. Click To Tweet
Right now, you get paid your salary whether you work 8 hours a day or watch Netflix for 6 hours and only work 2 hours. As long as you get your work done, you’re alright. Not true when you’re a coach.
Now let’s talk about those wack hourly rates…
Coaching clients pay $0 – $250 per hour-long coaching session. Coaches making $250 / hr have around 3 – 4 years of coaching success stories. If you’re starting to coach today, that $250 isn’t your ministry, sis.
A new coach (like you) usually starts off at $50 – $100 per session. Assuming you feel confident enough to start at $100, and you’re lucky enough to get 10 clients in your first month, you’ll make $4,000 a month. That’s under $50,000 a year.
Getting 10 clients at a time is wildly unlikely — even for an experienced coach — but we’re playing “what if”, so let’s continue…
If you meet with 10 clients weekly, that’s not 10 hours of work — that’s 10 hours you get paid for. You still have to:
- do marketing
- get on sales calls (free calls where not everyone buys from you)
- email back and forth
- reschedule calls
- develop your curriculum
- review your clients’ work
- build your partnerships
- get testimonials
- create more content
- manage the business (bookkeeping, etc)
- and more
At $4,000 a month, you can barely afford to hire and don’t have time to train anyone. 10 clients at $100 an hour is too many clients and not enough money.
10 clients at $100 an hour is too many clients and not enough money.
Oh, and btw, you only make the whole $4,000 if everyone shows up for their sessions. People only want to pay coaches for their actual coaching sessions, not the rest of the work they do.
Now, let’s look at consulting money.
People take consulting more seriously than coaching. Even you!
When you want solid advice from someone who knows something, you want a consultation. You don’t want a coaching session.
A new consultant can easily land her first client at $2,000 ($2,000 is the absolute lowest I allow my students to charge their clients). The new consultants I teach only need 2 clients to make the $4,000 that the $100 / hr coach needs 10 clients to make.
You would rather be a consultant making $4,000 a month off of 2 clients, than be a coach who needs 10 clients to maybe make $4000 a month, right?
Yes. The answer is yes.
Here’s why there is such a big difference in earning:
1. Coaches get paid to coach someone through a problem. Consultants get paid to solve the problem
Coaching clients are paying for accountability check-ins. Clients still have to do all the work. Consultants get paid to do the majority of the work. Then they hand over everything the client needs to be successful.
Consulting is particularly great if you like to do your work and be left alone (i.e. you hate being micromanaged).
2. Consultants can solve expensive problems. Coaches don’t solve problems.
This isn’t a dig on coaches. Any good coach will tell you they aren’t going to solve your problem for you. They make it very clear that they’ll help you get to a solution, but the client has to do the work.
Meanwhile, consultants are solving expensive problems for clients.
Consulting is particularly great if you like to do your work and be left alone (i.e. you hate being micromanaged).
What are expensive problems?
When most people quit a job to become a coach, they become:
- life coaches
- business coaches
- spiritual coaches
- mindfulness coaches
- productivity coaches
Aside from business coaching, these things don’t usually help clients make more money. That limits how much money it makes sense to pay you.
Regardless of the type of coaching, coaching is an investment in a client’s soft-skills or quality of life. It’s not a direct solution to a problem.
A consultant’s services, unlike a coach’s, are a must have. A good consultation can jump-start you earning more money and having more success.
When you’re consulting on expensive problems (as you should be), your rates will be higher than a coach’s rates. You’re not coaching people through a problem they don’t need solved.
Consultants solve problems that are either:
a. costing clients a lot of money or
b. preventing them from getting more money.
That makes your consulting services worth investing in.
Sometimes those expensive problems aren’t literally money problems. That doesn’t make them less expensive. Let’s look at an example.
Here’s a quick example of how you can flip your day job skills into a 5-figure a month consulting business:
Parents who have executive level jobs, whose children are on track to go to ivy league schools, need help keeping the kids on their ivy league tracks. This is a well-paid, high performing family who wants the best opportunities in life.
This family responsibility has fallen on the mom, who seeks the help of a consultant.
Let’s say you have a project management background. This is an opportunity for you. You could create a family schedule that includes school, work, and extracurricular activities.
Then you could build long-term timelines to secure ivy league acceptance. You’ll lay out the necessary steps for getting into the ivies. You’ll also make sure the kids are in the right activities, getting the right grades. When the time comes, you can even have professionals review their college applications.
All you need is project management experience and some pretty basic Googling skills.
This is an expensive problem. This family (and its social circle) values the status those degrees bring. They know these degrees offer their children exclusive opportunities in life. The cost of this mother dropping the ball is one (or all) of her children getting not into the schools they dream of.
That is a huge cost for her.
Still, keeping each kid on the ivy track, from late middle school and through high school, is too much.
Hiring you to manage this is a worthwhile investment in her family.
She doesn’t want, or have time for, a coach. She needs someone to handle this for her at a flat rate. You can easily charge $2500 a month for this and I’d expect this job to take no more than 20 hours a month.
If you’ve been through my consulting course, you know to delegate most of this project to someone you hire part time (it’ll be cheap, I promise). Now you’re getting paid to do very, very little work and have time to focus on getting more clients.
Only 3 more clients like that and you’re hitting 5-figure months, while maybe working 40 hours per MONTH.
This is a business a new consultant can start today.
A coach has to get certified, then spend years getting testimonials, before they can charge this much.
The big spender clients everyone is scared of…
Another major point: individuals and businesses hire consultants everyday.
New consultants can get business clients who pay $1,000+ per hour-long consulting session. Experienced coaches might pull clients who pay $1,000 a month.
You see the difference?
It’s even easier to get businesses to pay thousands for consulting than it is to get individuals to pay that. Yet, most people overlook working with, or are too scared to approach, a business.
That’s cool! That means there’s more money and less competition out here for those of us who believe in ourselves and know our value… 🙃
All jokes aside, businesses have paid for my services since my first few months in business. They still do.
Individuals and businesses hire consultants everyday.
Businesses expect to spend money to make money. Governments are businesses. Schools are businesses. Non-profits are businesses. They spend thousands on good work, good information, and some years of experience (which you have).
Plus, all that money that companies pay for employee insurance and 401K, etc, is money they hand you directly as a consultant. Imagine you quit your salaried job and come back the next day as a consultant. I’m willing to bet you’d get paid more — just because they don’t have to pay the costs associated with hiring actual employees.
How you’re going to get paid, starting from zero:
A coach isn’t going to make a job-replacing income in her first 6 months, usually not even first year.
1. Because they need testimonials they don’t already have
2. Because they need to stack enough clients to replace their income
3. Because they’ll charge less in the beginning to get more testimonials and build a track record (consultants don’t have to do this)
But there is one catch to consulting that can truly mess you up. If you’ve heard nothing else from me, please hear this:
Not every method of consulting is right for every type of consultant.
Yes, the money is higher for a new consultant than for a new coach. But there is not just one “way” that works for everyone.If you walk up a hill in high heels that don’t fit you, you’re going to hurt yourself. Your business model is no different. Click To Tweet
Some consulting business models are a perfect fit for some people and are a nightmare for others. When I say “nightmare”, I mean you start a business that fails so badly, you think you weren’t cut out to work for yourself.
But, nope! You chose a consulting business model that didn’t fit you. That’s all.
Think about it, if you walk up a hill in high heels that don’t fit you, you’re going to hurt yourself. Your business model is no different.
The key to starting a consulting business that gets high paying clients, from Day 1, is knowing how you like to work. This is easy to do. But, if you don’t make the effort to learn the right business model for you, you are setting yourself up to fail.
It’s super sad to watch a woman quit her businesses when the business only needs one small tweak.
I’ve seen so many women struggle with this that I created a quick-fast way to find the right business model for you
It’s simple. And it’s free.
I developed a personality quiz that tells you your consultant business model. It only takes a few minutes and can save you years and years of stress and agony.
But, if you’re into waiting years and years to get paid and enjoy stress — you can just skip the quiz and just go be a coach!
Take the personality quiz here and start making that job-replacing consulting money.