In the world of business, the number of strategies which one can deem as successful are just as abundant as the ideas an entrepreneur may have in his head before starting up a business. Consulting businesses are no exception to this, as the ways in which success can be achieved are many. However, there are some general guidelines that one should follow in order to accomplish the purpose of a consulting business. The questions we want to answer in order to establish a strategy that works are: What do you do? How is that different than others doing the same thing?
The main purpose of a consulting business is to help advise their clients with the expertise they offer in a particular field. As CEO of Deloitte Consulting, Jim Moffatt said: “We live to help our clients solve really complex problems. If it was easy, they’d do it themselves”. This philosophy is what lies at the fundamental level of consulting. Businesses have been investing more and more in consulting in order to expand their market. This has also shown an increase in the number of consulting businesses, making it harder to stand out, but also establishing the “be different” saying as a requirement rather than an option. Although being different may seem to call for disruptiveness, this is not the case. Being a successful business, by itself, will make you stand out, since not everyone out there is giving out results even if they might offer the same exact services.
In order to give the results their clients are looking for, consulting businesses have to be committed to their goals. Customer satisfaction, continuous improvement, and business development should be the aims of any consulting business. Satisfying customers is the mission of consulting, it is the reason why it exists. Improving over time should always be an aim, since with the continuously changing market, not improving translates to getting relatively worse. Developing business is a product of the job of any company: to create a customer; therefore it should always be aimed for.
As a fast growing market, consulting businesses are threatened by the competition. Standing out is a must, and clearly showing the customer what makes your business better than any other is a necessity. Hence, a clear business model is always important. As an example one might take that beginning in a new market means lower prices will help attract customers, however, in the consulting market, your perceived value is part of what you sell your customer: The more they have to pay, the more they expect. For a consulting business, a clearly defined financial plan goes in hand with a clearly defined mission, which is why this matter shouldn’t be taken lightly. In order to be a successful consulting business, do not underestimate the importance of a clear mission statement. You should be able to communicate your mission statement in a simple manner, regardless of any evolution it might go through as your business grows.
Shanna Wu Pecoraro
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