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June 11, 2020 10:08

Finding Your Natural Consulting Talent

How To Easily Activate Your Freelance Innate Gift?

One key to successful consulting activity is to focus your mind and blow your energy on what we are good at. Let’s be honest: we are all better-than-average performers in some particular situations, and obviously mediocre when we decide to do something else.

All of this is not related to the notion of pleasure or the intellectual interest of the activity. It deals with natural abilities. It what may be named natural gift.

But it’s pretty difficult for consultants to distinguish between :

  • what they’re able to do with very good results if they devote time and energy. This is a typical scenario of the majority of employees in companies. We work well enough to receive remuneration in exchange for our time. If we follow the corporate training and devote sufficient time and energy, we may become better at our job, can even be increased, or move up to senior positions.
  • and what they do in a natural way, with a certain talent.

Both types of activities can be enjoyable and rewarding, and I’m not here to say that one is superior to the other.

But great consultants know they have a limited amount of time and energy per day and they are so compelled to devote their entire soul to one single offer. And since you want to differentiate yourself as an independent consultant, you have no choice but to focus on what you are already good at.


Because if you are already good, you will become great with training. And if you are only average you can expect to be just good in a few years, but not good enough to make a real difference on the market. Remember that customers are not looking for good consultants. They’re looking for excellent consultants. Nobody likes the average. We all want the best.


But how can we find this natural consulting gift?

Where can we search for our specific freelance consulting abilities?


1. Dare to look for the obstacle and evaluate how hard it is to find the solution


When I was a young student in France, our teacher asked us every week to make writing activities on various subjects. Each time, I remember the systematic fear of the blank page, starting to wonder « What I’m going to write today? Do I still have something interesting to speak about ?». But my thoughts rapidly switched to « What if I chronicle my last experience on…? Mmmmh…maybe it could be interesting to relate…» and found myself deeply absorbed for several hours in a row just a few minutes later.

This is how I found that our spontaneous solution-oriented reactions to tricky encountered situations give us a valuable clue on our innate predispositions.

But finding this type of skill in us requires stepping out of our comfort zone, to dare to try new things, and this is why you may feel stuck at this point.


2. Natural consultant abilities fit with your values


Real and natural ability is not in contradiction with your values. If you need to use violence, be aggressive, lie to achieve your goals when you use your so-called "gift", you are on the wrong track. Reward a little bit, and search again for your talent.


3. Consulting talent is a long term view


We all know that the best consultants in a given activity are excellent precisely because they have been doing the same things for years. Practice, over long hours and over many years, allows you to refine your vision, your efficiency, and your results. When you are looking for your gift, don't look at what will be only temporary. Ask yourself what you are willing to do for years at the expense of immediate rewards such as money. Money comes later and as a natural by-product.


4. Freelance natural abilities feed you with energy


These are tasks where you fully feel yourself when you do them. They’re sources of deep satisfaction, of good feelings by performing a positive and rewarding activity. Curiously enough, they’re also energizing actions: even if they require a lot of your attention, you feel in a better mood after the performance rather than before, despite deep exhaustion.


5. Your consulting gift serves others and impacts their lives


The clue that must ring a bell is the number of times people ask you to help them with a particular concern (don't underestimate your skills, it can start with creating a Youtube video, writing an article for a friend, giving a difficult call on the behalf of your relative), or just demand your opinion on a particular subject.

If you still can’t figure your skills, I strongly recommend you ask your friends their opinion. Really, try it! I guarantee you’ll be surprised by their answers.

As Peter F. Drucker says “Most people think they know what they’re good at. They are usually wrong. More often, people know what they’re not good at, and even then more people are wrong than right.”

In order to have access to a deeper understanding of your personality, I suggest you perform the following tests. Several websites propose free tests.

  • MBTI® (Myers Briggs Type Indicator®) includes 16 personality types. Each personality type of MBTI® has a preference for :
    • Extraversion (E) or Introversion (I)
    • Sensation (S) or Intuition (N)
    • Thinking (T) or Feeling (F)
    • Judgment (J) or Perception (P)

MBTI is the gold standard of psychological tests. Julien has an ENTJ profile.

  • ENNEAGRAM: Enneagram is a model of the structure of the human person. This model results in nine different personality configurations, nine ways of defining oneself. Each of us tends to give priority in our lives to one of these self-images. Very interesting. Julien is a Type 8, not really a big surprise, but explanations around it taught him a lot of great things.


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