Many Business Owners are reluctant to engage Consultancy Services for various reasons. Reluctance to share confidential information, cumbersome procedures and long meetings, mistrust of outsiders are some common reasons preventing many Small Medium Enterprises from seeking consultancy engagements.
Statista is a leading provider of market and consumer data and it charts the size of global management consulting industry from 2011 to 2020. The consultancy industry is worth a whopping 160 billion US Dollars in 2019. So how can professional consultants add value to your business?
Here are seven reasons why you should consider hiring a Management Consultant in 2021 (Hint: Read till the end for a Bonus Tip!)
1. Consultants Bring In-depth Expertise
Consultants usually specialise in a specific domain, one where they are longtime experts. Being specialists in a particular industry (I.e., Digital Marketing or Social Media Marketing) or work function (I.e., Human Capital Development, Compliance or Marketing), Consultants usually have in-depth knowledge in their respective verticals and is aware of the latest trends and developments in their area of speciality.
2. Consultants Have Field Experience
Most consultants are experts in their field with 5 or more years of industrial experience under their belts. They would probably have worked on similar projects or consulted clients who face similar problems as your firm. This means they would have seen the common pitfalls or heard of the industry best practices that can help in alleviating your pain points.
3. One-Off Project Implementation
Small and Medium Enterprises can tap on consultancy services to implement one-off projects. Most SME has manpower shortage concerns or lack of specialised staff to lead a particular project implementation. Instead of hiring a full-time employee immediately, Business owners can engage external consultants to plan and implement a fresh initiative before considering adding to the headcount permanently.
For example, business owners can consider engaging a Brand Agency such as Visual Studio to conduct a Brand Audit and develop a Brand Identity, before hiring a Brand Manager to maintain the Brand assets at a later stage.
External consultants have no added incentive to say what the business owners want to hear. Consultants are often neutral in their assessments and provide more effective diagnosis of the issue. This allows them to make the most objective recommendations to bring the business forward, something that a long sitting team might not be able to provide.
5. Contentious Decisions
Businesses may encounter contentious or emotional situations where it is difficult for management to make a call. Situations such as marking job redundancies or adopting automation can be damaging for team morale if the call was made internally. In such situations, external consultants are less emotionally attached and their recommendations are often seemed as less biased by the employees affected, thus generating higher buy-ins.
6. Cost Efficiency
While consultancy services charge a fee to administer the project, the business owners do not have to incur permanent overheads, hiring and training costs or fixed costs such as providing a workspace or specialised equipment.
7. Zest of Life
Having the same team working on the same issues for a long period can bring stagnation or lead to Herd Mentality. This Ogilvy article talks about the Implications of Herd Mentality. In this study, Dr Toyokawa concludes that people may rely more heavily on following the herd rather than learning for themselves when dealing with difficult tasks and within big groups.
The last thing you want when working on a difficult strategic plan is a group of executives thinking and saying the same thing. External help can bring a fresh perspective to the discussion and spark a stagnated team. This zest of life can sometimes be the catalyst for bringing the entire project forward.
8. Enterprise Singapore Grants **
If your business is registered in Singapore, here is a bonus reason why you should consider engaging a consultant. Companies can engage an Enterprise Singapore-recognised consultant and apply for Enterprise Development Grant support (up to 70% of qualifying costs) to fund consultancy-related projects such as Brand and Marketing Strategy Development. Certified consultants, such as those from Visual Studio, are recognised by Enterprise Singapore to have the right knowledge, competence and ethics to support businesses in their growth strategies.
In short, Consulting is definitely more than just providing advice. Good consultants can bring in-depth expertise and experience to build a sound foundation for your business so that you, the business owner, can concentrate on doing what you are good at to grow the business.
Original Image & Video Credit: Statista, Annoying Orange