Exhibiting Launched Me as a Successful CLNC® Consultant*
by Theresa Smith, RN, CLNC
Several years ago, I was promoted to ED nurse manager in a major city hospital. After many years of hard work, I thought I had reached my ultimate career objective. Then I gave birth to our two little angels, and my former priorities were turned upside down. After our first child was born, I could hardly tear myself away to leave for work. By the time our second child was born, I had become a stay-at-home mom, at least until the children were older.
I wanted to continue using my nursing experience, yet have greater autonomy, less health risk and better income.
In hindsight, I was already dissatisfied with clinical nursing. Workplace politics, difficulties in hiring and retaining qualified staff, communication disconnects with upper management, increasing incidents of customer aggression and increasing health risks all contributed to a good deal of stress. With the birth of our children, I resolved to find a new career. I wanted to continue using my nursing experience, yet have greater autonomy, less health risk and better income.
I Shifted My Resolve into Action
My resolve shifted into action when I attended Vickie’s CLNC® Certification Seminar. That week really changed my life. Not only was her seminar an intense learning experience, it was also exciting and challenging. Vickie and her wonderful staff exuded knowledge, charm and sincerity. And they were motivating. By the end of the seminar, I believed that I could, and would, accomplish anything I really wanted to do.
Taking Vickie’s advice to heart, I began my new CLNC career the very day I got home. For the next three weeks, I spent at least 30 minutes taking action every day.
At first I was apprehensive about making follow-up phone calls to the attorneys to whom I had sent marketing packets. I had never tried to sell anything, let alone myself. I knew I had a valuable service to provide, and was sure I would find an attorney who wanted to use my CLNC services. So I prepared a script, and with each call I became more and more confident.
Initially, I got a few responses from attorneys requesting help finding testifying experts. Although they seemed impressed with my materials and my performance, I wasn’t getting requests for any additional services such as performing an in-depth analysis of the medical records. I tried to set up appointments to see some of them, but fitting into their busy schedules was difficult. Yet intuitively, I felt I could build better rapport by meeting them face-to-face.
Exhibiting Was More Comfortable Than I Thought
I thought it might be easier to meet attorneys in a neutral business atmosphere. With Vickie’s encouragement to “go outside my comfort zone,” I created my own exhibit for some local legal conferences. Sure enough, the conference atmosphere suited my personality. Furthermore, being treated as a fellow professional was refreshing.
I got my first real client from my first conference. One of the attorneys I met gave my portfolio to a partner in his law firm. The partner retained me and has been my client ever since.
So far I’ve exhibited at four legal conferences. I was astonished to be the only nurse exhibiting. This market is definitely wide open. I gained at least one new client from each of these conferences, proving this to be my best marketing approach.
At the fourth conference, I met a partner in a prestigious law firm. Until then, I’d been unsuccessful in marketing to him because I couldn’t get past his gatekeeper. Less than a week after the conference, he retained me for a case and in the course of conversation, mentioned the idea of hiring a full-time, in-house nurse consultant. Would I be interested?
Would I ever! Our youngest child was turning four and becoming more independent by the day, and our oldest was already in school. We could all manage with me working away from home during the day.
I Can Have It All
After a short and successful “trial run” to test our compatibility, I was offered a permanent job in this law firm, starting at 95% of my initial asking salary. I was also given my own office, complete with a new modular workstation and a new computer and printer. In addition to my in‑house job I have continued to run my independent CLNC business. I truly can have it all.
As a student of the Institute and from the moment I graduated from Vickie’s CLNC Certification Seminar, she and her staff were there for me. When I have questions, I am able to rely on Vickie’s guarantee of free mentoring. The CLNC Mentors offer firsthand experiences, facts, and resources, and often identify related issues and ideas I hadn’t even considered.
Today, I am happier than I’ve ever been. I have launched a successful CLNC business and joined a major law firm within 15 minutes of our home. I experience far less stress than I’ve ever had before and I am paid very handsomely. Best of all, I have the flexibility I need as a mother and spouse to remain an integral part of my wonderful family.
Now I’m proud to say that I am a successful CLNC consultant! Thank you, Vickie.
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