I love what I do. And as a consultant, my primary goal is to see my clients achieve success. But I've had to do some business course correction along the way. Specifically when I've let the ball drop on growing my own business by focusing solely on the growth of a client's business.
There's a fine balance. Your client needs you to be in the trenches with them to make things happen. But sometimes, actually a LOT of times, that leaves you with little to no time to get in the trenches of your own business. And I know what you're saying, "Working in my client's business, IS my business." And while that's true, you have to ask yourself if working solely on your client's business is growing yours?
I'm not saying that you should completely stop working on client business to grow your own. For most of us, this just isn't an option. Not only do you need to pay the bills with client income, and keep them happy, but by working on client projects you continue to educate yourself and build more business experience. However, you must also prepare and sow for more business to come. If you're only focused on your existing client business, you're not able to tend to your own garden. It's so easy to do because it's somehow easier to focus on others than ourselves. But what happens when that client decides to hire another, or closes shop? If you've been tending to your own garden the entire time, no big deal. You're prepared. But if that's all you had going, you can run into major problems. And then you've played yourself.