How smart women become change advisors instead of change managers

change advisor change consultant change management Sep 17, 2023
Lata in a pink top smiling and pointing; text: smart women become change advisors, not managers

I’m a lot like you - I care so much about helping people and making a real impact in the world. In fact, that’s why I became a Change Manager. But when I was a few years into my Change Management career, I noticed something really interesting. I was getting pretty experienced, working on different projects, massive projects. Projects that impacted 100,000 people, operating model changes impacting thousands, global cultural transformations that straddled continents, and digital transformations that were literally changing the way that we work. I loved working in Change and I was making great income from it, earning over $200,000 per year, working part-time, taking time off between contracts. I had built a life of flexibility and freedom, living in an inner city apartment with a pool, gym, spa, sauna, library and concierge, spending months overseas travelling to follow my passions, and really just enjoying a life of luxury and abundance. But I was starting to feel stuck and a bit unsure about where my future was headed. 


The day rate I was on was amazing, but super soon I’d cap out and hit the ceiling of what employers would pay. And in terms of progression, I could keep climbing the ladder to Head of Change and Change Director roles, and while that would come with more pay it would also likely come with more hours, more responsibility, and more stress. Was that really what I wanted?


But the worst thing? As experienced as I was and as highly as I was being paid, I would sit in endless project meetings, be in the depths of delivery, and even be asked to do basic tasks for under-resourced projects - tasks like data entry or scheduling. There were times I felt like a very highly paid admin assistant!! And my expertise and experience were being wasted.


It was lucrative, but not fulfilling. I didn’t get to choose my own projects or focus on the things I love to do and what was in my own zone of genius like facilitating workshops, coaching, and capability. I felt my income potential and my impact was starting to be stifled and while some people would love to be paid lots to do nothing, I’m not one of them. 


When you truly care about Change Management, about the experience of people, about improving our workplaces and our world, you want more. More choice, more impact, more influence. You want to lead the leaders of change and be the expert whose time and advice is respected and valued. 


I knew there was another way to work that could give me this. By shifting from Change Management to Change Consulting.


Here’s how:


Step #1: Shift to a consulting mindset and skill set

While Change Management is more focused “delivery”, Change Consulting is more focused on “direction”. We don’t just want to manage change in a project or a team, we want to empower transformation throughout an organisation. The scope is wider, the scale is bigger, and the success is more impactful. 


When you shift your mindset and skill set to a consulting lens, you’re able to:

  • Get a seat at the table as the expert
  • Decouple change success from project delivery success, so regardless of go live you’ve added real business value
  • Solve complex change challenges
  • Blend diverse skill sets to create your own unique flavour
  • Work with more projects and clients at a time
  • Pave the way for future changes and holistic business transformation


You can use advanced Change tools to add real business value. For example, I have an Experience Journey that blends my transferable skills from Marketing, UX and Coaching to map the flow that a stakeholder persona will experience. It focuses on the experience (not delivery) as the outcome, which means that it can be workshopped early regardless of dates or timelines and you can flush out issues before the solution is even developed. To see a live demo of my Experience Journey, watch the free limited-time replay of my Change Advisor Bootcamp - click here to watch free replay


But! You might still get stuck in delivery and it can be boring and draining to sit on under-resourced projects that keep running over time. How do we work more in OUR zone of genius for variety, growth and fulfilment… rather than just be a pair of hands to a project?


Step #2: Position yourself as a trusted change advisor

By positioning yourself as a trusted change advisor, you can focus on early strategy, vision and planning, add real value with business outcomes, influence Boards and Executives who are the decision-makers for the flow of change coming down the pipeline and set the tone for culture in the organisation, and coach delivery and build capability rather than necessarily do all the doing. 

As a strategic business partner, you may have to tell some hard truths. But you’ll have practical solutions to offer that help your project, leader or client not feel so alone, so overwhelmed, or so unsupported. 


But if you’re in a salaried or contract role, the truth is: you’re still trading time for money. You’ll reach the market cap at some point, so how can you find more freedom and flexibility with an uncapped income potential?


Step #3: Price and package your own solutions

When I set my own day rate as a consultant, I tripled my rates overnight and made six figures in my first calendar year of business! I got to choose my own clients, offer the services that I want (and be seen as the expert!), avoid agency fees and burnout, and work with more clients at a time to have a bigger impact. 



Making the move from Change employment to independent consulting was life changing for me and I believe everyone deserves to build a life of freedom and financial abundance on their terms, and enjoy flexibility and flow not just in their day, but in their week, their month, and their year. As a Change Consultant, my lifestyle is my choice: I work from home 100% of the time, I usually don’t sit down at my desk on weekdays until 10am, I take 1-2 afternoons off a week to socialise or go on an adventure, and blocks of weeks and months off during the year to travel, rest and recharge.


If you’d like to learn my secrets to becoming a Change Consultant in record speed, come to my exclusive live in-person Instant Change Consultant Retreat on 28-29 October in Sydney. This two-day immersive experience will teach you how to start or grow your own consulting practice, so you can choose your own clients, choose your own schedule, and choose your own rates. Final registrations for the retreat close Thursday 28 September so join now to secure your spot before the deadline.


CLICK HERE to join the retreat before the final registration deadline


Lata xx


P.S. If you haven't yet watched my free limited-time Change Advisor Bootcamp where I share my expert tips to get a seat at the table, build strong relationships, and lead complex change to success as a trusted change advisor, watch it ASAP: click here to watch free bootcamp

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