How to Become a Leading Business Management Consultant: 5 Tips
After having years of experience working in the private sector, either as a business owner or as a key player in a successful company, you have decided to enter the consulting industry.The only thing we can say right now is this: congratulations and good luck!
Business management consulting is a rewarding field – you’re helping struggling companies survive and thrive, you are your own boss and you come across an interesting cast of characters on your journey. At the same time, it can sometimes be frustrating: businesses are hesitant over change, you become overworked and companies are too demanding some of the time.
It is true that many people will argue that anyone can be a consultant. It is also true that not everyone can actually flourish as a consultant. It takes temerity, honesty and audacity – if you’re channeling Alec Baldwin from “Glengarry Glen Ross” it also takes brass balls – to consult.
Here are five tips to being the best business management consultant in your town:
👔 1. Throw Your FOMO Out the Window
When you are a self-employed consultant, it can be difficult to utter a certain two-letter word. However, sometimes saying “no” can be the only practical thing to do. Indeed, you will suffer a case of FOMO, or fear of missing out, but if you overextend yourself and eventually become overworked then you are essentially useless to other clients who you are trying to help.
The rudimentary measure to employ is to toss your FOMO out the window.
👔 2. Small Businesses Will Always Have Limitations
Following years of engulfing yourself in the corporate world, you may have forgotten what it's like to be a small business. In today's economy, small businesses face a wide array of barriers to success: tight budgets, excessive taxation and regulation and a global economy.
This means that small businesses have certain limitations that you have to learn to deal with. Not everything can be solved for smaller firms with a big cheque for some bigtime advertising firm.
👔 3. Seek Out the Firm’s Key Decision Maker
When there is an organization of five high-level players then it can be hard to receive any final verdict, confirmation or decision on any matter. There will always be differing opinions.
Ultimately, and this may be hard to handle, you must seek out the company’s key decision maker. Others may have various ideas as to who is the real decision maker, but with a little bit of deduction and stimulation of the grey cells, you can easily determine who is running the ship.
👔 4. What They Say is the Problem Isn’t
If you have ever watched the show “Kitchen Nightmares” with Gordon Ramsay, you will notice every single episode the same trend: restaurant owners think one problem is deterring patrons from visiting their diners, while Ramsay discovers that it’s entirely something else (usually old, rotten food).
Ditto for the average struggling small business. Eventually, you will have created an entire book of businesses that have often referred to one thing as the bane of their existence, but after some snooping you will locate the source of problems: derelict management, bad products or indifference by everyone within the firm.
You have to be ready for this to happen, and you have to convince them of this issue.
👔 5. Be Ready to Face Resistance to Change
The most annoying tendency for business owners is their resistance to change. It is understandable: they have invested their time and money and risked it all to own a business.A bit of sympathy never hurt anybody. Remember, it is all grounded in emotion.
With that being said, the resistance to any type of modification or alteration will frustrate you. Nonetheless, you will need to work hard to present your case of a specific makeover or overhaul of operations if they wish to keep their doors open and eventually turn over a profit.
Business management consulting is both a challenging and rewarding field for many successful professionals. You work with a variety of companies, you provide your expertise and you see a fraught enterprise be transformed into a glorious business with an incredible sales sheet.
There will be hurdles you need to overcome, but this is like any other industry. With some thick skin, patience and a desire to see others flourish, your consulting practice can balloon.