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Get With The Program How to be a smarter . . . computer consultant.

By Heather Page

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

With the entire nation going high-tech, it's no wondercomputer consultants are in demand. But don't think it's aneasy way to profit from the high-tech boom. It takes skill, hardwork and even a little luck to make it in the computer consultingfield.

One of the most critical concerns is determining the scope ofyour consulting services. Specialization is the way to go,according to Debbie L. Handler of the Independent ComputerConsultants Association (ICCA). "You don't want totry to do everything; that spreads you too thin," she says."Find a niche, and be the best at it."

If you've worked in a particular field, that may be yourfirst choice as a specialization. But make sure that expertise isin demand, cautions Max Steiner of the National Association ofComputer Consultant Businesses (NACCB), a 300-member association oftemporary agencies that finds assignments for computer consultants.The rapid pace of change in technology means the field youspecialized in just a year ago may now be obsolete.

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