"True consultants never have offices of their own. They are very well aware of the tax-effectiveness of working from home, where, no doubt, they may well have a room devoted to their consulting activities. All that is required in this room is a table and a chair, with a word processor and an answer-phone.

You should not record the message yourself on the tape which tells the caller you will be available shortly, and so on. It should be recorded by a friend. This heightens the impression that you are both busy and important. Furthermore it suggests that you have an organisation behind you. As it is generally secretaries who will make phone calls to you, and as they are only impressed by other secretaries, it is no more than prudent to arrange matters to sound as though there is a secretary working for you. Thus, when making calls, you should cultivate a skill in mimicry, making the call in one voice, preferably female, and then handing it on so to speak, to yourself."

Nigel Viney: Bluff your way in consultancy

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