Most businesses could greatly benefit from a business consultant but most business owners usually have to run into a serious problem before they recognise the need for one. A problem may have arisen in the business through expansion or having to take on more staff. Any significant shift in the working environment will greatly magnify difficulties that most likely already existed.
There are other reasons why business owners are reluctant to use business consultants. They may fear losing control or being asked to implement strategies they don’t like. They may even fear criticism or worry about running up huge fees.
However, good business consultants are used to dealing with all these common concerns. They should know how to handle people as well as steer a business in the right direction. They know the trust and full co-operation of all personnel have to be gained to be successful.
By retaining a good business consultant, an owner should expect to benefit in the following ways:
- Increased clarity – the business consultant should be able to identify clearly where the business currently stands and the way forward
- Increased focus – as an attainable plan of action is developed with practical paths to each goal
- Better time management – more time spent productively and time wasting activities eliminated
- Increased commitment – as personnel are deployed more satisfactorily
- Improved communication – for employees and clients
- Better co-operation – with all members of the business feeling valued
- Increase in retention – as staff value their employer’s business and their place in it
- Less stress – as issues are faced and dealt with
Care needs to be taken when choosing a business consultant. Checks should be made on references, credentials and personality. If the owner or staff cannot get on with them on a personal level, it simply won’t work.