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About Consulting Letters

I'm lucky. My consulting business has been extraordinarily successful. I began in a spare bedroom in my house, and ended with more than 300 brand-name corporate clients. Along the way, we generated $1,000,000 in annual revenue with only four consultants. When I first left a large national firm, a friend said I would never make it: "You're too nice a guy." Yes, I'm nice—but I'm also competitive.

I am fairly quiet, but in groups I can look like an extrovert. I call myself "an introvert masquerading as an extrovert." For that reason, I'm not a great public speaker. (Everyone loves my speeches but me.) I am a competent writer—professors Martin Bucco and Don Crosby at Colorado State University made sure of that. As an introvert, writing is more natural than speaking.

With few exceptions, my consulting practice has always been booming. I have a gift for creating advertising, proposals, for getting publicity and resolving disputes—and I'd like to share that gift with you.

Besides writing for CareerLab, I write for my clients. I've helped hundreds of executives write stuff to advance their careers, and I've helped hundreds of career changers write stuff to find exactly the right job. My consulting friends hire me to tweak their sales and marketing materials.

I've cultivated a simple writing style on purpose. Like Hemingway, I believe short is better. I've published dozens of business articles, and that sharpened my pencil. Business writing must be easy to understand, or it gets tossed immediately. I never want my readers lost in a forest of 12-letter words, 20-word sentences, and 500-word paragraphs.

Almost everything consultants need to do can be improved by a well-worded, eye-appealing document. Whether you call them notes, letters, memos, e-mails, or faxes—they're all vital.

Being a packrat, I saved many of my consulting letters. Not all of them—there would have been thousands.

Just take a look. Click through the collection. I'm confident these letters will ignite your thoughts. You may consult in a different specialty in a different industry than mine, but our problems are the same.

It's funny. Sometimes when I need to write something in a hurry, I copy from my own letters. Why re-invent the wheel? There are only so many ways to say, "I'm really looking forward to working with you."

I want you to be extraordinarily successful, and I know these letters will contribute to your success. Best wishes and happy hunting.

Your friend,

William S. Frank

About Consulting Letters Sections

William S. Frank, M.A.,
25 Reasons I love consulting.
by William S. Frank

As I was posting these letters online, I realized I want to communicate my love for consulting. It's just a great business. The single letters, taken together, may create a picture of enjoyment, but in a burst of creativity I listed some of the reasons consulting is such a good fit for me—and perhaps for you, too. They are not prioritized; this is just how they came out.

  1. Brand. You are your own brand, and you can define it any way you want. For many years, I provided outplacement to the ex-employees of Schlumberger, the world's largest oilfield service corporation. When departing employees left the company, they didn't request outplacement in their severance package. They said, "I want Bill Frank."
  2. Demand. The world will always be full of terrible problems that need solving.
  3. White Hat. I can be a helper and get paid for it.
  4. Pay. I can be paid to do things I'd gladly do for nothing.
  5. Variety. Every day is different.
  6. Happiness. At this stage of my career, I only work for people I respect and care about. If a client micromanages me or is otherwise no fun, I complete the assignment and replace them.
  7. Talent. I'm using 110% of my talents and stretching myself to the max.
  8. Change. I can change my focus any day I want. If you're a McDonald's franchisee, you don't say, "Hey, I've got this great idea for a meatball sandwich—let's try it out today." In consulting you can adjust your focus hour-by-hour, as long as your clients still understand and appreciate what you do.
  9. Income. No one else would pay me as much as I pay myself.
  10. FUN. I can't think of anything I'd rather be doing.
  11. Retirement. I can write and consult as long as I am physically and mentally capable. Peter Drucker worked into his 90s, and when asked which book was his best, he said: "My next one."
  12. Job Security. Although clients come and go, no one can come into my office and say, "Pack up your stuff . . . You don't work here anymore." In 29 years, I've only had one employer: ME.
  13. Travel. I don't have to travel unless I decide to. I travel if it's both FUN and profitable—or at least FUN.
  14. Commute. I live five minutes from my office, a corner office in an upscale six-story tower. In winter, I leave a heated garage at home and drive to an underground heated garage at work. There's seldom time to hear even one song on the radio.
  15. Vacation. Consulting is more fun than vacation (except on Wailea Beach in Maui).
  16. Friends. I have developed hundreds of close acquaintances and several lifetime friends.
  17. Time. I can work as much or as little as I like: four-hour days or 18-hour days. (Of course, my income will reflect that.)
  18. Employees. I can work with employees, subcontractors, partners, or alone—I've done it all.
  19. Passive Income. I've developed several products that provide "mailbox money." I earn while I'm sleeping.
  20. Ethics. I've never had to violate my values or personal code of ethics. I've never had to lie, purposely deceive or harm others, or promise things I can't deliver. I go to bed with a clear conscience. That doesn't mean there's never any conflict. But the conflict is conducted according to generally accepted business practices.
  21. Virtual. My career is fairly portable. With the Internet, e-mail, cell phone, and FedEx, I can work nationally, even internationally from my office—or anywhere in the world.
  22. Purpose. I make a difference in peoples' lives every day. I see it in their faces, hear it in their voices, and read it in their thank-yous.
  23. Experience. Every painful or joyful life experience makes me a better consultant. So does every person I meet or book I read. Grey hair can be good in consulting.
  24. Structure. I have to work very hard, and the clients expect superb results—but I get to structure my days, weeks, months, and years.
  25. Boss. Most of the time, I love my boss.