Starting and Building a Thriving Consulting Business

Community, courses, guides, tutorials, and tools 
to build a thriving consulting business

Critical to Success Guides You Step-by-Step in Building Your Thriving Consulting Business

  • Gain Independence and Recognition
  • Fill Your Client Pipeline Quickly
  • Replace Feast-or-Famine with a Stable High Six-Figure Income
  • Build an Automated Marketing Machine
  • Create Multiple Streams of Income
  • Join a Community of Full-Time Professional Consultants

Imagine Yourself as a Highly Successful Consultant...

Industry Expert Photo

As an expert ready to start independent consulting, Critical to Success helps you,

  • Reduce startup risk using proven LEAN startup methods
  • Put business structures and processes in place from day one
  • Know the niche(s) that are your best chances of success
  • Create a trusted name and brand before you start 
  • Build an active list of leads and referrals ready to become clients
  • Join a community of peers and experienced colleagues

As a new consultant, Critical to Success helps you,

  • Quickly fill your pipeline with quality prospects
  • Engage and nurture prospects with proven email and LinkedIn scripts
  • Close clients with confidence using consultative sales scripts
  • Decrease workload with proven retainer and proposal templates
  • Earn stable high six-figures instead of the dreaded Feast-or-Famine cycle
  • Build a marketing machine that fills your prospect pipeline
  • Share ideas, build camaraderie, and escape isolation with a learning community
Experienced Consultant

As an experienced consultant, Critical to Success helps you,

  • Break through your past limits
  • Create an automated marketing machine that pre-qualifies clients
  • Use proven retainer and proposal templates that decrease work and increase earnings
  • Build a high-quality portfolio of clients you enjoy working with
  • Gain industry recognition as a thought-leader
  • Find partners for large projects and share experiences in a consulting community
  • Create multiple streams of income that earn six- and seven-figure incomes

Are You Held Back by the Hidden Traps in
Building a Consulting Business?

Every consultant has stories of how they wasted time and money trying to build their business.


Learn the strategies, systems and tools that will help you build a thriving consulting business. Don't be held back by these common traps,

  • Watching initial referrals dry up and your prospect pipeline shrink
  • Wasting years working in the wrong niche
  • Building a brand that stays invisible
  • Giving lots of speeches, doing lots of networking, and getting no leads
  • Being trapped in the Feast-or-Famine cycle
  • Not knowing how to talk with prospect so they ask, "When can you start?"
  • Working long hours instead of leveraging multiple streams of income

Critical to Success is built on 30+ years of consulting experience, two years of research, and hundreds of hours of interviews. It contains the lessons you need to grow a highly successful solo or boutique consulting businesses.

Transform Your Consulting Business
Transform Your Life

Don’t waste years and miss opportunities by trying to learn on your own how to build your consulting business. 

Critical to Success teaches you proven consulting business practices, strategies, skills and tools that will help you start and build a thriving consulting business and add more time to your life.


The courses, tools, and community in Critical to Success will help you, 

  • Consult in a niche that values your contributions
  • Build a brand your prospects remember
  • Quickly fill your prospect pipeline with proven techniques that match your style
  • Turn leads into prospects and prospects into clients
  • Create a stable six- or seven-figure income
  • Automate marketing to increase income and create free time
  • Turn your expertise into multiple streams of consulting income

You Can Spend 10 Years Building a 
Thriving Consulting Business 
or
You Can Do Build It Quickly with
Critical to Success!

I remember earning about $37,000 a year during my first few years as a consultant. It took almost ten years for me to learn how to make a six-figure income as a consultant. 

I don't want your climb to a six-figure income to
take ten years.

I remember my excitement the first time I reported $983,000 to the US Internal Revenue service. To me it was proof that I had learned what it takes to build a six-figure, solo-consultant income, deliver great value to my clients, and have work-life balance.


Most consultants go through this same struggle - they are experts in their field and dedicated to helping clients, but they don't know how to find a niche that values them, how to build a pipeline of prospects, and how to build automated systems that market and leverage the value they deliver.

Most consultants face years of Feast-or-Famine!

It was an amazing "Ah Hah!" moment for me when I realized there was a way to deliver more value to more clients and work less. And in the process I was earning more. My income did not have to depend upon how many hours I worked. And boy, had I worked long, hard hours!


I don't want you to take years to learn how to start and build a highly successful six- or seven-figure consulting business. 

John Lamy

Ron’s Critical to Success course has totally changed my life. I'm not kidding!

I operate a one-person consulting business, and Ron’s Critical to Success class has totally changed my life. I’m not kidding! . . . I’m a very enthusiastic fan of Critical to Success. If you decide to sign up, be prepared for big changes and lots of work. But I promise you, you’ll greatly appreciate it!

John Lamy //  Management Consultant, Southern Oregon
Lamy Consulting

Leslie Lawton

Ron Person has brought a lifetime of successful consulting to his Critical to Success course.

Ron Person has brought a lifetime of successful consulting to his Critical to Success course. I’ve learned so much from him! He knows it how to make it work and he knows it well. He helped me find my niche, focus my brand, and then work with LinkedIn in a way that’s natural to my own easygoing communications style. I can’t say enough good things about him and his work.

Leslie Lawton //  Copywriter, Content Marketing Strategist

Connected Communications

What is it Like Having a
Thriving Consulting Business?

Join the Ranks of High Earning Solo-Professionals

Often, it’s just a few things that separate being average from being great.

In 2015, the average self-employed person in the US earned $47,200. In that same year,

 

  • 2,700,000 self-employed people earned more than $100,000
  • 300,000 self-employed people earned between $500,000 and $2,500,000

Imagine earning high six- and seven-figure incomes!


What difference would that make in your life, 
your family’s life, and your children’s future?

What was the difference between average earners and high income solo-professionals?


What where the factors Critical to Success?


In Elaine Pofeldt’s ground-breaking research on high-earning self-employed people she discovered the Critical to Success factors,

  • Picking the right niche
  • Testing the product or service before offering it publicly
  • Creating a consulting offering that is high-value and in-demand
  • Creating a defensible brand
  • Leveraging the offer instead of working hourly

Pofeldt, E. (2018). “The Million-Dollar, One-Person Business”, Lorena Jones Books.

After 30+ years as a six- and seven-figure independent consultant and two years researching success factors, I’ve distilled what is "Critical to Success" into step-by-step guides, videos, and checklists. 


Now it is quick, easy, and straightforward to apply the systems, strategies, and skills used by highly successful solo-consultants and professionals.

It's Not Just About Money.
Consultants Enjoy a Satisfied, Healthy and 
Independent Lifestyle.

Satisfied, Healthy and Independent

You might think that the “hard work” it takes to make high six- and seven-figure incomes would add serious stress to your life. In fact, the opposite is true. Being unsuccessful creates more stress.

74% of full-time self-employed independents in 2017 reported they were very satisfied, the highest level reported in seven years by 

In this same survey 65% said they chose to be self-employed. They were in control of their life and work.

70% of full-time self-employed said that working independently was better for their health.

MBO Partners, "State of Independents Report", 2017 

Sheella Mierson

I highly recommend Ron Person's course to anyone who wants to grow their consulting business

When I gave a presentation at a meeting or a conference in the past, people would seem excited, and then I rarely heard anything from them. Then, Ron taught a class on how to get leads from presentations. We got half a dozen serious leads from our next two presentations, and are having conversations with those people now. And we know how to do this in the future as well.


I recommend Ron Person's course highly to anyone who wants to grow their consulting business. In addition to giving comprehensive information about every aspect of marketing and sales for consultants, he is generous in answering our questions and critiquing our materials. In the classes he creates a community among the students, and we are also able to help each other.


I wish I had had this course earlier.

Sheella Mierson, Ph.D. Biophysics //  ​Creative Collaboration, Team Dynamics
Founding Member, The Sociocracy Consulting Group

Partner and Certified Facilitator, Blueprint of We California

Start Building Your Consulting Business

With Critical to Success you can impact your consulting business in minimal time. Follow a proven fast track to build the foundations, then accelerate your business with lessons and tools to that go from Finding a Niche to Building Recurring Revenue. 

You improve your client's business. 

Now it's time to improve your business.


There's just enough concept so you know how and why strategies, systems and tools work. Then you dig in and use the short, easily accessible videos, step-by-step guides, checklists, and tool kits to build your consulting business. 

Fast Tracks

Each stage has a Fast Track that gets produces Quick Wins fast. Fast Tracks guide you with one to two hours of videos and worksheets each week to make the biggest impact in the least time.

Consulting Tools and Templates

Master Mind Library

Critical to Success has a huge library of step-by-step guides, videos, scripts, templates, and worksheets for each stage in building your thriving consulting business. The Master Mind Library is accessible to members of the Consulting Community.

Thriving Consultants

Consulting Community

Being an independent consultant can be isolating. Join the online community to make connections, get feedback on ideas, work together on problems, and access our online events.

Consultant Online

Consultant's Directory

All members of the consulting community are in the consulting directory, but consultants who complete the course get top billing. The directory showcases your consulting services to prospects, press, and partners.

Video Office Hours

Live Office Hours

Once a week Open Office Hours lets you ask questions and discuss client management. Office Hours are recorded and indexed for students to watching at any time.

client team

Leading Edge Learning Events

Watch live and recorded events with experts, experienced consultants, and authors who are on the leading edge of consulting and professional productivity.

Any Device

Need access to video, tips or scripts while you’re away from your computer?

No problem. Critical to Success is fully accessible from your Smartphone or tablet.

Flow Chart Guides

Beginner or experienced, it doesn't matter. Flow charts show you where to start and what modules will give you the greatest impact on your business.

Chunked Videos

5 to 15 minute “over the shoulder” and “step-by-step” videos mean no more long boring lectures. Get what you need quickly and make an impact. 

Step-by-Step Guides

Work quickly and confidently on business and marketing projects with “over the shoulder” videos and step-by-step guides that take you through business, marketing, and technical projects.

Checklists and Cheat Sheets

Checklists and cheat sheets keep you on track at your client and finishing business and marketing projects. 

Workbooks and Tool Kits

Workbooks, tool kits, and spreadsheets help you calculate fees, manage projects, and more. 

Scripts and Templates

Proven email and LinkedIn scripts and blog headline swipe files make it fast to get out the content that keeps your prospects engaged. A library of blog templates makes it easier to publish blogs to stay in front of your clients.

Just Enough, Just in Time

Bypass the long lectures that drag you down in other courses. Content and tool kits are chunked into small segments so you can use just what you need, when you need it. Find it quickly. Get the job done. Make your business grow.

Course Modules

The stages of building a thriving consulting business have Fast Track and Mastery modules. Fast Tracks give you Quick Wins in one or two hours each week. Once you complete the Fast Track for a stage you have access to the Mastery library for that stage containing videos, step-by-step guides, and tools. 

Global Research

Stage
01

Finding Your Best Consulting Niche(s)
It's an old saying, but it's true. "The Riches are in the Niches." Creating a high-income, professionally satisfying business is easier and more profitable when you find a niche where your are highly valued. 

Customer Needs Research

Stage
02

Finding Your Ideal Consulting Clients and Knowing Their Pain

You need to know who your clients are, how to identify them, their highest-value needs and problems,  and how you can guide them on the journey from lead to client. 

Mission Vision Brand

Stage

03

Promoting Your Consulting Services

You want prospects to know and trust you before they even meet you. They should have confidence that you can solve their pain.  If you have been working on your logo, stop now. This stage will show you how to promote your consulting services and build trust and authority.

04 Get Clients Quickly

Stage

04

Getting Consulting Clients Quickly

You need a proven process that identifies qualified leads, engages prospects and leads them to ask you, "When can you start?" The lead generation systems in this stage cost $800 to $3,000 a month if you hired an agency to do it for you. The sales methods you'll learn come naturally to consultants - you aren't selling to a prospect, you are consulting and helping them find the best solution, YOU!

Marketing Machine

Stage

05

Marketing Your Consulting Services

Eliminate the Feast-or-Famine cycle. Create a marketing machine that attracts and qualifies leads, then engages and nurtures your prospects while building trust and authority. A good marketing machine means you no longer have to spend 30% of your time looking for new clients.

Consultation Fee

Stage

06

Calculating and Setting Consulting Rates

You can win new clients, deliver high value, and have an impressive brand and still not create a thriving, successful consulting business. You must price your offerings so you are profitable if you want to stay in business and grow. 

Proposals Contracts

Stage

07

Writing Consulting Retainers and Proposals that Win

While every consulting assignment is different, they all include a few important pieces of paperwork. The paperwork is for far more than just legal issues. You can boost your income and increase productivity with documents that define responsibilities, deliverables, tasks, times, and more.

Client Pipeline Finance

Stage

08

Building Multiple Streams of Income with Packaged and Productized Consulting Services

One of the greatest benefits of independent consulting is independence and the opportunity to make high six- or seven-figure incomes through multiple streams of income. Packaging and productizing your consulting gives you a chance to work when you want, where you want, and with whom you want.

Rachel Eryn Kalish

I cannot rave loudly enough about Ron and his precise and wise advice! 

I cannot rave loudly enough about Ron and his precise and wise advice! For decades I have had a wide approach: consulting to everyone thinking that all companies could benefit from our work. His quote rings constantly in my ears: “marketing to everyone is like marketing to no one.” We now focus on three markets and specific client profiles. It makes finding leads easier, we know their challenges, and how to talk to them, and we have put together sets of solutions more specific to our client’s needs.

Rachel Eryn Kalish, M.C. //  Creative Collaboration, Team Dynamics

Certified Facilitator, Blueprint of We California

Lead author "Challenging Communications" training, Blanchard Companies

What Clients and Students Say

I've had the opportunity to work with many consultants. Ron Person goes right to the top of my list of the most effective.

I’ve had the opportunity to work with many consultants and facilitators in my career, and Ron Person goes right to the top of my list of the most effective. In fact, it’s not fair to Ron to refer to him as a facilitator, as he’s really more of a learned guide, humble educator, process cop and teammate. Most importantly, he added true value to our project. It’s an understatement to say that we never would have attained the results we did had it not been for Ron. I’ve referred him to colleagues at other companies and look forward to working with him again.

Peter Cohen  //  VP Marketing and Retail Strategy

We have a clear vision of what we will become and we know exactly what we must do to get there.

Your guidance helped us through the sometimes difficult process of developing a strategic plan. Not only did we capture the widely diverse needs of our stakeholders, but we produced an executable plan in record time. We have a clear vision of what we will become and we know exactly what we must do to get there.


Some strategic planning processes are little more than pointless exercises that end up on a shelf. This plan is one we know how to execute.

General Manager //  One of California's Leading Performing Arts Centers

I must tell you that your book is an excellent read...

I must tell you that your book is an excellent read. In fact, it's like a checklist which one should carry while implementing a Balanced Scorecard in any company.

Nitin Singh Bhadauria //  

Your book was a great guideline for us in improving our strategic planning.

I just wanted to drop you a quick e-mail to congratulate you on your great book. It was a great guideline for us in improving our strategic planning.

Alex Robbio //  Vice-President, Business Development

It Took Me Ten Years to Build a 
Thriving Six- and Seven-Figure
Independent Consulting Business


You Can Get There a Lot Quicker!

I want to pass on to you the strategies, systems, and tools I've
learned and used in,

  • 30+ years consulting regionally and internationally
  • Earning six- and seven- figure incomes as an independent consultant
  • Working with Fortune 1000 and Global 1000 clients such as Microsoft, Carnival Cruise Lines, Mary Kay, International Harvester, and many more
  • Writing four international best-selling books published by Macmillan and J Wiley with 3,000,000 copies sold
  • Two-years researching the difference between average and high earning solo-professionals 
Connect! - the marketer's guide to becoming more relevant, effective, and successful within the new marketplace.
Balanced Scorecards and Operational Dashboards with Microsoft Excel, 2nd Ed.
Using Microsoft Excel 97, Special Edition

I've always been fascinated by business and science. At 12, I started my first business washing retail store windows in our small town. At 16, I picked tomatoes in hot dusty fields. After flying as an Air Force pilot I thought it was finally my chance to work in a real business.


My Corporate Job was Boring and Unsatisfying


After joining a large high-tech company I went crazy. I was trapped in a cubicle. I kept waiting to see a world of customer-oriented products, innovation and data-driven decisions. I never saw it.


I quit to become a solo-consultant. Two years later that "safe", very large, high-tech division I worked in, went bankrupt. 

With No Mentor  or Community

It was Hard to Build My Consulting Business


The first few years of solo-consulting was not easy. In fact, it was grim. I barely made enough to keep going. I sold my house and downsized.


Without a mentor I went through years of painful "learning opportunities" on my own. I started building libraries of systems and tools that separated average from high performance consultants. It took me years to grow my consulting business, starting at the local level and working up to international clients.


I put together business and marketing systems, strategies, and tools that consistently earned high-six figures with multiple years earning more than a million dollars. And, I was still a solo-consultant.

I want You to Learn Proven Strategies, Systems and Tools
I've Used with My Fortune 1000 and Global 1000 Clients

Global 1000
Fortune 1000
J Wiley
Macmillan

I Want You to Thrive

I personally want you to learn how to,

Quickly build your own thriving consulting business. All videos, guides and tools are concise so you can quickly impact your business. There are no hour-long droning sessions about irrelevant business philosophy. Follow a workflow map, take action and improve your business. It's action oriented.

Learn and use real world lessons that work, not misleading promises from people who haven’t been there. Critical to Success distills the practices from 30+ years of successful solo-consulting as well as proven best-practices from Silicon Valley startups.

Use your skills to become a change agent in the business world. The world faces immense challenges and we can help businesses do well by doing good.

Copyright 2019, Critical to Success