Management consultants are independent professionals who identify and analyze the business problems of clients. They also provide advice to busines owner’s and their managers on ways to improve the efficiency and profitability of their business, and how to adapt to change.
Management consultants offer independent advice and support to clients on management issues. They help will help a company identify and investigate problems and adapt to change. They suggest solutions and help the client to put their advice into practice and how to move their business forward. Sometimes they are referred to as business consultants, or business strategy advisers.
A business may require the services of a management consultant for a wide variety of reasons. Consultants could advise, for example, on:
- Business strategies, growth and development.
- Sales and marketing policy.
- Quality management.
- Financial management.
- Relationship management.
- Information technology.
- Environmental management.
- Hiring and human resources policies.
Independent consultants can specialize in any of these areas.
Sometimes management consultants visit companies that have serious problems. For example, they may give urgent advice to a retail store struggling to outpace competition from a larger chainstore or franchise.
However, management consultants do not always play the role of this “emergency service”. They may also advise a company by giving a second opinion on certain ideas, or to provide you with management or business skills and knowledge in a certain area of the company. Consultants work with companies large and small, including financial institutions, local and central governments.
Management consultant skills
There are certain traits that can help us better identify and understand what a management consultant is. A priori, he is an enthusiastic, highly communicative and creative person, with the ability to work under pressure and with confidential information. A practical person with an inquisitive mind and ambitious enough to solve problems and overcome challenges. A management consultant must master interpersonal treatment, be methodical and organized to do interviews and work plans. His fields of knowledge are usually economics, marketing and accounting, and even philosophy and politics.
What type of companies require the services of a business consultant?
Any company that has a business problem can turn to a management consultant. If, for example, quick advice is required to overcome competition from other companies, the consultant can perform an “express” role, tackling a very specific topic in a short time. On the other hand, if what is asked of you is a second opinion on certain ideas or knowledge in a certain area of the company, the dedication may be more continuous. Large and small companies, including financial institutions, local and central governments, manufacturing industries, and NGOs often use these services.
Management consultant work process
Consultants identify problems, collect and analyze information, draw conclusions, and present options and opinions to the client. For this they usually carry out an immersion in the hiring company: they observe their way of working, their finances, they interview employees and managers. They also analyze and request the collaboration of outsiders such as potential clients, research specialists, accountants and lawyers. Once they consider the available options, they write the recommendations report and make sure that the client agrees and understands the proposal. They can also help you put this proposal into practice.