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Seb Anthony

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Help – Becoming an Independent Consultant


Hi I'm new to the forum. I'm seeking some guidance in how to draw down funding centrally for a target market as I plan to become an independent consultant. The funding will pay/co pay for the training. I know my audience and how to market my product but that's it!

I am currently in part-time employment in the field of training and development, could it be seen as a conflict of interest in becoming independent in the same field?.

I have had this idea for many months now and feel it is the right time to do something about it, however I am nervous about getting it right and making it work.

I am happy to discuss my query in further detail

Thank you in advance for your help
sera johnston

7 Responses

  1. more clarity please
    Sorry I may be being thick but I don’t actually understand your question:
    ~What do you mean by “centrally”?
    ~When you say the funding will pay for the training do you mean it will pay your invoices?
    ~If you know how to “market” your product why does it/you/your clients need “funding”?
    ~I suspect that the conflict of interest issue will, at least partly, depend on your employment contract.

    Finally, if you are “nervous” about making it work, is your hope of “funding” a way of getting someone else to underwrite your risk….some might interpret that as creating a predisposition to failure as you ar risking another person’s money!
    Can you launch without the safety net of “funding”? If not, you may want to re-assess the robustness/value of your proposition.

    Sorry if this doesn’t help!

  2. In reply to posting
    Sorry if I wasn’t clear. The funding is for the learner to be trained – the central part is drawing down funding from goverment schemes to support the learner.

    Hope this makes more sense


  3. Funding

    Have you considered looking for a small business grant? I am not sure if these are still available but there used to be financial assistance for start-up businesses. Its worth checking out

  4. ah ha thanks for clearing that up!
    Totally outside my expertise I’m afraid!

  5. Gov funding
    Unless what you are offering is exclusively VQ’s in a specific industry – there is no such thing.
    EU and gov funding varies from postcode to postcode, for example people living in TW3 could get funding, when people in the next street in TW2 do not..
    the only way to find out is to approach the learning & Skills councils and see what is available – and believe it or not you can do more training in Dec-March than in June-sept – its all about budgets and targets! or checkout

    I’m sorry but the days of the UK having lots of publicly funded training have all but gone… most EU training spend now goes to the eastern EU.

    You MAY get lucky… but for a sustainable approach to being independent you need a sustainable business model – and that means lots of customers.. not the one public one with the cash!


  6. Approach Companies that do have funding
    Hi Sera

    I think you would find it a struggle to get funding on your own as funders look at things like track record and ability to deliver clear outcomes that are linked to specific government targets.

    I think your best way into this is to try to market your ideas to organisations that already have funding for training.

    For example, if your idea was to train workers in the care sector, you might be able to find any number of charitable/voluntary/community organisations that already have funding to train their staff that are prepared to give you and your idea a go.

    You still have to market your idea to them though. Try your local Voluntary Sector Council, they may be able to help put you in touch with the organisations most likely to need the training you want to deliver.

    Just a thought; you may want to try your idea out as a volunteer for an organisation first, make it work, retain the imtellectual copyright and then sell it elsewhere using the original organisation as a testimonial/referee or network opportunity.

    Alternatively, if the idea relates to training people in the private sector, you don’t stand any chance of getting funding, it’s a case of doing what the independent training consultants on this site do, build their brand, network and constantly market their services.

    Hope that helps

  7. |Funding facts
    Hi Sera

    It’s very difficult to get funding (as opposed to contracts) as a private business unless you are a not for profit company or social enterprise – and even then funders do generally want to see a bit of a track record.

    Possibly the best way to approach the problem is to see if groups or organisations serving or working with your target community arte interested in what you have to offer – and then get them to apply for funding to employ you to deliver it.

    There are lots of funding streams available but a lot of groups are not experienced in making successful applications so support for that would probably be useful – maybe through their local Council for Voluntary Service (VCS) or Rural Community Council (RCC) depending on where they are based.

    You can email me if you want to talk about it in more detail cathy at nottinghamcvs dot co dot uk



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