It's 2023, and the consulting space is in turmoil following several economic, social, and technological shocks. I'm not going to play the analyst and write macro trend reports for you - each sector, vertical, or market segment is being impacted in different ways. But one thing's sure: It's not going to be a boring year.
A couple of friends who run micro and boutique consultancies asked how I've prepared mentally to start the year. It comes down to reinforcing three mindset affirmations:
- Focus on what you can control;
- Make (most) decisions quickly;
- Prioritize execution over strategy.
A couple of words on each one of them.
You can't insure yourself against all life's problems. One key lesson I took from the most resilient consultants I worked with is that successful people worry, but they worry well. This lesson from the pandemic period still serves me well.
Second, 99% of the decisions you make are not irreversible. You won't get all of them right, but the key is to make them quickly and learn from them. Poor choices might cost you time and money, but are infinitely better than inaction (paralysis by analysis). The key to prioritizing when you're stuck is having a bias toward action.
Finally, you get no points for trying. Fast decisions are only half the battle - you need to put them into practice. If you're not focused on outcomes, the fastest decision-making in the world isn't going to help you.
Start small, build momentum, and scale up over time. That's how I'll make 2023 a fruitful year. Are you following?