COMMERCIAL office space is unnecessary when you first start out in consulting. Unless you have a very compelling reason for renting commercial office space, SAVE your money. You're much better plowing that money back into marketing and promotional expenses.
WHERE SHOULD YOUR MONEY GO?
Even a tiny commercial office space hidden away in a building where no one can see you is going to be $400-$600 a month. A low traffic retail store is even more; at least a $1000-$2000 per month. That's a lot of money to spend on something that you don't really need as a new business owner. Rather than waste that money on commercial office space, invest it in MARKETING and business DEVELOPMENT. You're going to need to do these things to get your business to grow, whether you have commercial office space or not. There is no reason to add to your overhead expenses.
THE EASY SOLUTION
When you start out, a HOME office is the best choice. Until you bring on a lot of staff and need a place to house several people in the same location, it’s really not going to benefit you to have a commercial office space. Most of the time you will be servicing clients at their office, going on sales calls, or attending networking events. And it hasn't been proven that having a PUBLIC working space is going to bring in any more traffic or business than you would get working from home. Networking is still less expensive and more effective than hanging a shingle out on the street -- and will bring you more long-term clients than casual foot traffic.
WHERE WILL YOU DO YOUR WORK?
In most consulting businesses, your clients will not be coming to you. You go to THEM. The time you spend in your own office is minimal -- it's simply a place to make phone calls, catch up on paperwork, etc. The money you spend on your office space should be minimal as well. The real business is done OUTSIDE the office -- that's where you make your money, and that's where you should invest most of your time and cash.
You might think that you need commercial office space if you want to run SEMINARS. These are excellent marketing tools, but you don't need to invest in your own personal conference room in order to make use of speaking engagements in your business. You can RENT a meeting room or executive office space very reasonably -- on an as need basis by the hour or day. These rentals are great for workshops, large meetings, marketing events, etc. -- and they cost much less over time than paying for a dedicated commercial office.
THE BOTTOM LINE
Commercial office space is EXPENSIVE. There is no reason to put yourself on the hook for $500 or $1,000 a month or more, every single month just to be able to do say you have an office. As a consultant, the time you or your clients spend in your office does not warrant renting commercial office space. Use your home office for as long as you can and rent out space by the hour or day as you NEED it.
Copyright MMI-MMVI, Computer Consulting 101 Blog. All Worldwide Rights Reserved. Joshua Feinberg is a 15-year veteran computer consultant and has appeared in CRN, VARBusiness, Microsoft Direct Access, TechRepublic, American Express OPEN, Entrepreneur, Inc, SCORE, Small Business Computing, and USA Today. To get free access to Joshua’s proven computer consulting business growth strategies, sign-up now for the free training seminar recording at www.computerconsultantssecrets.com.
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