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4 Qualities Highly Paid Freelance Consultants Have

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April 12, 2021
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5 minutes
Leo Saini
Experienced copywriter who spends a lot of money at restaurants and regrets it later.

Consulting is an exciting profession in which one gets to experience different challenges every day, meet awesome people, and travel to new places.

But what does it take to build a successful career in consulting? Is it a degree from a prestigious university? Or recommendations from important people?

Well, sure, good education and having people who can vouch for you does help, but becoming a successful freelance consultant requires way more than that.

In this article, we’ll discuss the 4 qualities of well-paid consultant.

1. Leadership: Ability to Lead Complex Situations With a Smile

To build a successful career in consulting, you will not only be required to solve difficult issues, but you will also be expected to do so with a calm and upbeat demeanor. Yes, things can get a bit chaotic sometimes, but being positive during such times will give the clients assurance that their project is in the right hands. /p>

Remember, a consultant gets hired when a company needs external guidance and leadership. In a lot of other professions, employees/contractors are given directions by the employer. However, consulting is kind of the opposite because you get hired to give directions to the person who hires you. Understand this social dynamic very well if you want to get more high-paying projects.

For example, if a company is struggling to boost its sales and its revenue going down, then that’s a problem. You, as a consultant, have to brainstorm and find possible solutions and lead the company to the desired position.

“Before you are a leader, success is about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is about growing others." - Jack Welch

2. Networking Ability: Having Access to High-Paying Projects

As a freelance consultant, it is ultimately your responsibility to find new projects. It’s one thing to have talent and leadership skills, and it’s a completely different thing to have an opportunity to show it to the world. As the saying goes: “Your network is your net worth.” So, how to find people who will help you get exciting freelance consulting projects? Well, it’s simple - use the online consulting marketplace to find people who can connect you with the right companies. It is where the gold is for the freelance consultants.

Online consulting platforms help connect freelance consultants and businesses that are actively looking for consultants. For example, here at Consultport, we have over 3,500 freelance consultants in our talent pool, and whenever an exciting project comes up, we contact the consultants who may be fit for a particular project.

When you try to find new projects on your own, things might get a bit frustrating. But when the best freelance platforms find new projects for you, you can focus on other important aspects of your consulting career, such as building a personal brand or giving 100% on your current projects (instead of worrying about the future). Remember, a successful career in consulting requires way more than talent. Networking and having access to decision-makers in a business is also equally important quality of consultants. Fortunately, the online consulting marketplace has made it easier to connect with top clients. Do take advantage of this!

3. Adaptability: Being Able to Change With the Consulting Market

Being able to adapt is very important quality of consultants for a successful career. The freelance consultants who have higher chances of making it to the top are the ones who can understand changes in the market and adapt to them in a timely manner. They constantly learn new things and maintain their position as an expert in the market. Like many other professions, consulting is one in which the more you learn, the more you may be able to earn.

For instance, due to the pandemic, the need for expertise in the digital transformation sector has increased. So, if you’re a freelance consultant who is willing to upskill themselves and learn the ins and outs of digital transformation, you may be able to close way more projects than consultants who are stuck in the past decade and still offering services that are no longer in demand.

You have to know when to move on. You have to strike while the iron is hot. And a good way to find out what’s in demand is to contact some of the best freelance platforms and enquire. It's as simple as that. Once you know what services clients are looking for the most, you can adapt your own personal brand and consulting services accordingly.

4. Expertise: Having Deep Knowledge and Experience

A non-expert knows what might work, but an expert knows what has actually worked in the past, how it worked, and whether or not it will work for a current client. Experts have in-depth knowledge on a particular subject, and they keep on learning new things to upskill themselves in that subject. Your clients are looking for directions, they’re looking for answers, and you can only lead them and solve their problems if you’re highly knowledgeable and experienced yourself - AKA an expert!

Even if you close big projects, by yourself or with the assistance of the best freelance platforms, you will ultimately have to demonstrate your expertise and help clients achieve results. The more you succeed, the stronger your track record will be, and this will help you attract more clients. When you have some case studies, client success stories, and testimonials, it gets easier for you to position yourself as an expert.


Several personal traits may increase one’s chances of having a highly paid and successful career in consulting. First and foremost, a freelance consultant should be able to lead their clients with a positive attitude. It’s not always easy to be calm under pressure, but if it was easy, everyone would be a successful consultant.

A consultant should also have networking abilities to be able to close new projects consistently, and using the online consulting marketplace to grow one’s network really helps. As a consultant, being adaptable and willing to change with the changing market really helps with closing new projects. And last but not least, in-depth subject matter knowledge and expertise are absolutely necessary to solve problems (and earn a good fee for doing so).