3 min read

Developing Effective Education Leaders - McSorley Consulting

I've worked in education for over ten years, and in that time, I've opened three new schools and also been recruited twice to oversee strategic turnarounds. As a result, I've done a lot of work with building or rebuilding workplace cultures, scaling, etc.
Developing Effective Education Leaders - McSorley Consulting

Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in career and business development but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Matt McSorley, founder of McSorley Consulting, located in New York City, NY, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

I provide consultation to schools and non-profits on business operations, as well as for-profits that service the education sector. Additionally, I have individual coaching clients, almost entirely leaders in education, whom I typically speak with once per month or on a quarterly basis.

Tell us about yourself

I've worked in education for over ten years, and in that time, I've opened three new schools and also been recruited twice to oversee strategic turnarounds. As a result, I've done a lot of work with building or rebuilding workplace cultures, scaling, etc. But my original degree is in Counseling Psychology, and I've always loved the coaching aspect of leadership. I'll always love those one-on-one conversations about individual growth.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Honestly just starting the LLC in the first place. Back in 2019, I gave my then-workplace nine months' notice that I'd be leaving at the end of the school year, and by February 2020, I was in three different conversations with organizations about joining as COO or Executive Director. Then March 2020 hit, COVID hit, and everything changed. My family situation changed, and we moved. I'd always planned to start a consulting side hustle, but now my runway had dramatically shortened. I filed the paperwork, figured out the accounting, and built the website in about a week from April.

What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?

A substantial and unexpected amount of my business comes from the private sector, specifically tech companies that build education-related products for schools. I help them understand the market and gain insight into how schools compare and select products. I didn't plan for this but was prepared for it due to all the work I've done in edtech, platform selection, database management, etc. Simultaneously, I've gotten a lot of requests from schools for support with compliance. I hate compliance. I've done it, but I really don't enjoy it. So, on the one hand, I've tried to be flexible, and on the other, I've had to draw boundaries so that I don't hate my job, even if that means turning down clients.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

Early on, another owner/operator who provided professional services warned me that as much as 60% of my time might need to be devoted to drumming up business -- marketing, generating and chasing leads, following up, etc. I really didn't want to do that, and so far have avoided it, but that took a lot of creativity and flexibility on my part. With that in mind, my advice would be:

  1. Get honest assessments of your strengths and what you can offer.
  2. Diligently assess what the market needs are.
  3. Try to be flexible in leveraging your strengths to meet those needs.

Where can people find you and your business?

Website: https://www.mcsorleyconsulting.com/
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/mpmcsorley/


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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