April 15, 2024

The Consultant’s Guide to Overcoming Imposter Syndrome


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I’m an executive coach and accomplished business consultant who brings experience as a two-time start-up Chief Operating Officer, small business and entrepreneurial expert, and coach to my work. Learn more about me here!

Meet Brandi Keiser

So,  you’ve stepped boldly into the consulting world, but you may have noticed a shadow that often trails quietly behind many of us. This, my friends, is the nagging whisper of imposter syndrome. It’s that inner voice that says, “You’re not good enough, experienced enough, or expert enough.” But let me tell you, that voice is not telling you the truth. It’s the echo of fear, and fear is a signal to be challenged. It is not, I repeat *not* a deterrent from the pursuit of growth.

Acknowledging the Imposter Within

First, know this: Imposter syndrome is common among high achievers—a paradoxical companion to success. Don’t let it take the driver’s seat.

  • Recognize imposter syndrome for what it is—a collection of feelings, not facts.
  • Write down your achievements and revisit them when doubt creeps in. You earned your successes. They weren’t just lucky breaks.
  • Share your feelings with trusted peers. You’ll find that you’re not alone, and there’s strength in solidarity.

Redefining Expertise

In the consulting field, expertise isn’t about knowing more than everyone else. It’s about providing value through what you know.

  • Define what expertise means to you. Is it about having all the answers or about knowing where to find them?
  • Embrace continuous learning. The more you learn, the more value you can provide, and the more your confidence will grow.
  • Teach what you know. There’s no better way to cement your expertise than by sharing it with others.

The Power of Authenticity

Authenticity is the antidote to imposter syndrome. When you’re true to yourself, there’s no room for doubt about whether you belong.

  • Be honest about what you know and what you don’t. Honesty fosters trust and respect.
  • Align your consulting work with your values and passions. When you care deeply about your work, confidence naturally follows.
  • Let your unique perspective be your trademark. No one else has your unique blend of experiences and insights.

Action Over Perfection

Perfectionism is a close cousin of imposter syndrome. It’s an unreachable standard that keeps you from valuing your real worth.

  • Set realistic and attainable goals. Celebrate progress, not just perfect outcomes.
  • Focus on delivering value, not on being flawless. Your clients want results, not perfection.
  • Learn from feedback instead of fearing it. Constructive criticism is a gift in that it allows you to grow.

As consultants, we’re in the business of growth—our clients’, and by extension, our own. Imposter syndrome will have you believing you’re not ready to lead that growth. But I’m here to remind you that you are not only ready; you’re necessary. The insights and guidance you bring to the table can make a real difference.

So, turn down the volume on that inner critic. Let’s remember why we embarked on this journey: not because we believed we had no room to grow, but because we knew we had value to offer right here, right now. 

Remember, my friends, imposter syndrome is a sign that you’re pushing beyond your comfort zone, and that’s precisely where growth lives. So, embrace the discomfort, challenge it, and rise above it. The consulting world awaits your unique imprint.

All my best and more,


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