What Does a Business Consultant Really Do?

Preparing for Interviews? Get RocketBlocks. When companies are faced with mission-critical challenges or problems that require expertise, an efficient way to resolve the issue may be to contact a consulting firm. For example, consider the scenario of a large consumer electronics manufacturer that has decided to merge with a competitor of similar size. While both firms have made small acquisitions in the past, neither has ever attempted a merger of this scale.

Therefore, neither of you will have the muscle memory or the internal experience to perform well with confidence. Companies may be able to do this on their own, but given how much is at stake, they want to execute with confidence and therefore leveraging the expertise of a consulting firm makes sense. In many cases, consulting firms will be used to provide an objective third party opinion on an important decision being made by a company. Why is this happening? Shouldn't the company's key stakeholders who know their own business best be perfectly qualified to make that decision? Yes and No. Yes, they will understand the business well and are likely to have more context than any third party.

But other challenges almost always arise. Business owners may have blind spots or certain biases. Therefore, bringing an outside voice will help them confront and deal with them objectively. Another example is a deadlock scenario. For example, the board of directors or factions within the executive team may not agree on the right path and, therefore, an objective opinion and tiebreaker may be needed.

Another common possibility is that the consulting firm can provide an objective view of industry best practices, essentially taking advantage of its broader scope of how other companies have addressed similar problems. The last common case is that the company has a pressing problem. Since all of its current teams and people are tied to ongoing projects, the company needs an injection of intelligent people and brains to address the problem at hand. Some companies are even designed to operate this way. For example, private equity firms often rely on management consulting firms to help them with specific aspects of due diligence when looking to make an acquisition. Now that we know a little more about the type of clients who hire consulting firms and we know the kinds of problems that drive them to hire a consulting firm, let's look at what a management consultant actually does.

A management consultant works with company leaders to assess the company and identify problems, gather information and implement solutions. Management consultants often work in teams, and most work for consulting firms, rather than being on the payroll of the company they are analyzing. Consultants can perform a number of tasks that can vary significantly by industry. In short, consultants provide expert opinions, analysis and recommendations to organizations or individuals, based on their own experience. They are essentially solvers, serve as objective problem solvers, and provide strategies to prevent problems and improve performance.

Management consultants help companies improve their performance and grow by solving problems and finding new and better ways of doing things. Nor is it just in the private sector: many companies work with public sector organizations to help develop their services and, when necessary, reduce costs and save. Starting, taking control or learning how to manage a business is hard enough but these owners also often have to perform the roles of vice president of finance, chief of human resources, director of sales, marketing specialist and many more all at once. Also when choosing your consultant remember that the best consultants meet both technical and psychological needs of your clients. While sometimes used interchangeably with business consulting management consulting involves training training and strategy establishment at the corporate level rather than business processes and financial results. So what does “solving business problems” really mean? How can YOU a recent college graduate tell a C-Level with 20 years of industry experience what to do? In these companies the business is divided into projects offices and support centers; my answer will mainly explain the roles of managers in front-line projects not their positions in the offices. The wide range of consulting jobs makes it an attractive career offering a variety of projects challenges and opportunities for personal development. Its value lies in learning about the business and objectives of each client and in adapting strategic advice and consulting to the specific challenges facing the company. With a consultant there's no need for business owners to reinvent the wheel or waste valuable time on something an expert contractor can complete.

In fact not having time to “do it all” is a top concern for small business owners according to Forbes magazine. Consultants must understand their client's needs as well as their own capabilities in order to provide effective solutions that meet both parties' expectations. They must also be able to communicate effectively with clients in order to ensure that their advice is understood clearly. Management consultants are essential for any organization looking for ways to improve its operations increase efficiency reduce costs or develop new strategies for growth. They provide valuable insights into how businesses can become more successful by identifying areas where improvements can be made developing plans for implementation and monitoring progress towards goals. Whether you're looking for advice on how to start up your own business or you're already running one management consultants can help you make informed decisions about your future direction.

Trent Monserrate
Trent Monserrate

Friendly social media enthusiast. Subtly charming web nerd. Passionate zombie buff. Subtly charming gamer. Extreme zombie ninja.