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A Dream Come True

The ins and outs of starting your own consulting service

This story appears in the May 2003 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Whether you've been laid off from your corporate job or you're just ready to strike out on your own, you're not alone if you dream of starting a consulting business. To make that dream a reality, Joseph Riggio, CEO and president of JS Riggio International Inc. in Mahwah, New Jersey, has developed a program to help aspiring entrepreneurs launch consulting businesses.

First, says Riggio, pick a point of entry where you already have expertise and familiarity. What are you passionate about? "The more specific, the better," he says. "Think about it as though you're entering a funnel from the small end." Be tightly focused and position yourself in that small area-you can't be all things to all people. Use your specific expertise to persuade your first few critical clients to take a risk on you; only then can you expand your horizons a bit.

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