I’m an independent consultant in my real life. I consult in many different areas; health care finance, leadership/diversity, social media… sometimes independent consultants are jacks of all trades. If you’d like to learn more about me and some of my consulting prowess, you can go to the bio page on my business site to check me out.

Me, the consultant

There are basically two types of consulting businesses. The first is the large consulting firm that employs not only a bunch of consultants, but people who do other things as well. The second is the independent consultant, an individual who decides he or she doesn’t want to be a part of the corporate structure, wants to work on their own in some capacity, and is fairly flexible in the types of things that they’ll work on.
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If you’re a nurse or a trained technician that works in a hospital or clinic, and you’re getting tired or bored because of what you deal with on a daily basis, there’s an option you might want to think about considering. There are companies that are known as traveling nurses services that will contract with you to go to hospitals or clinics across the country that need your services.

sasint / Pixabay

It sounds like a good gig, and in some ways it is. But there are some realities that most people don’t know about until they get into it that are negative. You’re not going to find this information anywhere else online; I know because I checked. So, I’m going to give you the down and dirty of working for organizations like this so that you know how to protect yourself or what’s coming if you decide this is something you want to try.
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I don’t think anyone who’s a consultant thinks of themselves as dumb. As a matter of fact, though one doesn’t have to be Mensa genius to be a consultant, it takes a certain amount of skill, chutzpah and nerve to be one, especially an independent consultant.

30-second speech
by Irina L from Pixabay

With that said, I have to own up to many moments of confusion when I’m around other consultants and, in some cases, people who work in certain industries. My confusion comes from not knowing what the heck they do because I don’t understand what they’re talking about.
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One would think that I, being a health care finance consultant by profession, would know better. However, my learning a lesson I actually knew about becomes a teaching experience for you the next time you visit either your physician or the hospital for a procedure.

PACAF via Compfight

I needed to have some lab work done after having an appointment at my endocrinologist. I called my insurance company and was told that if I had it done at my primary doctor’s office that it would be covered in full except for a $40 copay. That sounded great to me. I know lab work can be expensive sometimes, but I wasn’t having anything out of the ordinary performed.
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One of the questions new consultants always have concerns how to price their services. If you can imagine how hard that is to do for consultants, then you can imagine how hard it is for someone to hire us when they don’t have a clue what services we can provide might cost.

rawpixel by Pixabay

Recently, a consultant friend of mine came across a request for services, where the potential client began by asking for price and nothing else. The consultant said that a price is hard to give when there are no details on the project. He asked a few questions, then waited for a response. When it came, the person admitted that she hadn’t really thought much about what she specifically wanted, but thought that hearing prices might help her decide the scope of the project. That’s always bad for business and rarely ends well.
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