Democratizing Consultancy: Is Waiving Goodbye to Set Fees and Head Office Just the Start?

Not too long ago, while based in Sydney, Australia, I was ensnared in a complex web of commercial expectations and high operational costs. Charging clients between $4,000 and $7,000 a day was standard practice. But this led me to an ethical dilemma: How could we genuinely democratize access to quality consultancy services? Weren’t social enterprises, NGOs, and early-stage startups the ones who needed it the most? Were we not alienating those who had the ambition to change the world but not the financial resources? Additionally, did such fees not geographically limit us to serving only those in economies as developed as Australia’s?

It wasn’t until my shift to remote work and time spent in various European countries that the solution became evident. Lower living costs and the freedom afforded by remote work allowed me to restructure my rates without compromising my quality of life. This marked the genesis of an innovative business model—one that didn’t discriminate based on geographical location or income level. This pivot was merely the commencement of my quest towards “creating better tomorrows.”

Inspirational Milestones

Over the years, I’ve been fortunate to collaborate/”share the journey” with organizations that dared to defy conventional wisdom. Semco, a Brazilian company that revolutionized workplace norms by allowing employees to set their own salaries in the ’80s, is one such inspiration. Fast forward to today, and this concept still rattles the foundations of traditional business models. Why is that?

The Great Shift: Challenging the Norms and Meeting Skepticism Head-on

At the Great Shift movement, we have always aimed to be at the cutting edge of transformative ideas. We’ve recently been asking ourselves: “What if we let our clients decide what they should pay us?” This idea led to spirited debates among my team. While some were thrilled, others voiced their concerns: “What if people take advantage? Doesn’t this undermine the value of our work?”

But instead of dismissing these apprehensions, we decided to turn theory into practice through a controlled experiment. The initial outcomes were not just surprising but revelatory. It’s crucial to question how often we limit ourselves by clinging to established business models that no longer serve our evolving objectives.

Challenges and Transformation

Implementing our new model has not been without its share of challenges. For instance, imagine planning a workshop without having a clue about the expected revenue. Terrifying, isn’t it? Despite the hurdles, our experiments have been largely successful, and we’ve decided to extend this approach to all our services through the last quarter of 2023.

Future Visions: A Paradigm Shift in Business Goals

Our future plans transcend financial objectives. Central to our vision is the ‘Central Engine,’ a collaborative platform designed to magnify our social impact. Other future initiatives include:

  1. Regional Coaches: Building a network of coaches to adapt our models to local conditions, from Argentina to Singapore.
  2. Donation-Based Online Platform: An online platform that democratizes access to our services, supported solely by donations.
  3. Financial Transparency: Complete financial disclosure so that all stakeholders can see where each dollar is allocated.
  4. Transparent and Capped Salaries: We aim to introduce salary caps and complete transparency in remuneration for all. We have an open salary policy for some time. We would love to expand this into all the areas.
  5. Flat Structure: No head offices here—our structure promotes collective ownership and equal contribution from all.

The Final Word

My ultimate inspiration is the untapped potential for transformation. “Creating better tomorrows” is more than a motto—it’s a way of life. The real question is: Can businesses become vehicles for societal transformation? I wholeheartedly believe they can and should.


If this resonates with you, feel free to follow me for more on LinkedIn. You might also enjoy my recently published book, “The Great Shift,” available on Amazon in both ebook and paperback formats. If you’re having difficulty purchasing it, reach out—I’m here to help.

In essence, my mission is to guide leaders, founders, and solopreneurs towards high performance while achieving work-life harmony. Interested? I’d love to hear from you.

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