A business growth consultant working with a client
A business growth consultant can give you a fresh perspective and spot the challenges that hold your company back

60% of business closures that happened due to the COVID-19 crisis are now permanent.

If you are one of those organizations that find it challenging to remain afloat and adapt to the recent market changes, let alone generate revenue and drive returning customers, then you’ve come to the right place.

From digitalization to identifying newly arisen business opportunities, your organization may stand to gain a lot by engaging an expert with a firm hand of the markets’ pulse.

In this article, we will highlight the benefits of employing a business growth consultant and the steps to choosing the right one for your needs.

Let’s dive in!

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What Is A Business Growth Consultant?

A business growth consultant is an expert advisor who focuses on understanding a company’s objectives and desired goals, recognizing its key challenges and providing strategic advice that generate results and drive financial success.

At some point in their life cycle, most businesses will plateau, hitting certain barriers that slow down or stifle further growth.

These obstacles may be:

  • Inadequate management
  • Ineffective leadership
  • Lack of insights
  • Not taking the time to understand customer needs
  • Financing hurdles
  • Absence of ‘growth mindset‘
  • Ineffective business planning
  • Marketing mishaps
  • Failing to meet customer expectations
  • Rapid growth
  • And more

This is where a business consultant can make all the difference.

These experts help organizations improve performance and efficiency as well as leap ahead by recognizing opportunities for internal process improvement as well as growth potential through optimized or new streams of revenue.

Their solutions typically cover the following key phases:

  • Discovery and discussion: This phase focuses on the business diagnosis and needs analysis. The business growth consultant conducts in-depth research to gather as much information about the client as possible. These experts then ask a set of questions related to the client’s target market, major competitors, business goals, key challenges, personal concerns and more.
  • Long-term strategic planning: Based on this evaluation and gathered data, business consultants can then take the project forward and create a strategic action plan. This plan will focus on the business’ long-term goals, the tools and expertise needed to achieve them as well as the potential opportunities for improvement.
  • Training: This step involves training where the business growth consultant makes sure the organization’s team fully understands the new business strategies including the next steps they should implement.
  • Action plan implementation: During this stage, the clients execute the strategies and tactics provided by the consultant. With responsive monitoring and supervision, this phase will make sure the organizations are on the right way to achieve their business goals and drive measurable results.
  • Evaluation: Once the client executes the strategies, the job of the business growth consultant is not over yet. At this phase, the clients together with their consultants evaluate the project to determine how successful the implemented strategies are.

In addition, some business consultants may also offer on-going training and support and collaborate with their clients long-term, whenever they need help and professional advice on specific areas in their businesses.

What Business Consulting Services Do They Provide?

Depending on each organization’s unique needs and goals, these experts may provide a different range of business consulting services.

As such, their services may include defining the basics of a business strategy to restructuring the company to optimize performance, seal revenue leaks and improve profitability.

Here are some examples of the specific tasks they may undertake:

  • Run a business introspection workshop to define or redefine the pillars of your business including your unique value proposition, functional and emotional benefits, buyer personas, elevator pitches, SWOT analysis and more
  • Engage branding experts to define the mission, vision and brand values to align the company internally and on external communication channels for unified identity
  • Perform competition analysis to challenge their current tactics and recognize untapped opportunities
  • Inspect their current business models and conduct market research to discover new revenue streams
  • Assess organizational setup, including in-house vs. outsourced resources, hiring strategy, talent gaps or surplus
  • Consolidate recurring fees and expenditures to optimize spend and seal revenue leaks

Some additional business consulting services that these experts may offer include:

  • Sales analysis and planning
  • Marketing and advertising consulting
  • IT consulting
  • Web consulting
  • Performance management
  • Management consulting
  • And more
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5 Benefits Of Hiring A Business Growth Consultant

These are the major benefits of hiring a business growth consultant:

#1: Clear And Unbiased Perspective

It often happens that business owners are not able to impartially point out the real problems that affect their organizations.

The wish to preserve tradition, lack of experience or fear of change are some of the main culprits that drive small businesses and startups out of business.

Business growth consultants can help organizations overcome this challenge since they have the expertise and experience necessary to see the big picture.

In other words, they see your business as part of a broad ecosystem that includes the industry and your target market.

These experts serve as an external resource that has no emotional attachments to your business and they breathe confidence into making daring moves by bringing a proven track record of success to the table.

#2: Deep Insights And Relevant Experience

Business growth consultants typically spend years performing specialized roles in large companies where they held leadership positions.

Many business consultants are entrepreneurs themselves and boast a track record in building businesses from the ground up.

Others are serial investors capable of identifying businesses' potential.

In any of these cases, your business consultant should come in with a wealth of insights and experience for you to leverage.

#3: Cost Reduction And Time Saving In The Long Run

All that expertise and experience usually comes with hefty rates, no solid promise (the markets are unpredictable) and timeline estimates that may exceed the ones you hoped for.

However, acquiring this expertise can save you from many headaches down the road.

Firstly, business consultants justify their rates by making your business more profitable with a focus on sustained profitability.

And secondly, they identify structural and other process-related issues that may lead to fruitless investments and do-overs in the long-run.

#4: Access to Valuable Tools & Resources

From subscriptions to the latest market research to cutting-edge tools, business consultants typically come in equipped with all kinds of valuable resources.

We are talking about resources that cost from $200 per month like SimilarWeb for instance (a tool that helps you spy on your competitors' website data) to thousands of dollars in yearly subscription fees to in-depth market research papers.

#5: Customized And Results-Oriented Approach

There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to business consulting services.

To help companies grow and achieve the desired results, business consultants take the time to learn about the struggles and needs and then they tailor their advice and strategic action plans based on the unique clients’ challenges and goals.

In addition, these experts also take a results-oriented approach helping companies set the right goals and milestones as well as KPIs for performance measurement and strategy updates.

Who Should Invest In Business Consulting Services?

Business consulting services are not limited to one sector or company size only.

In fact, both startups and established organizations can benefit from hiring a business growth consultant.

Partnering with these experts is a great idea if:

  • You need an experienced, interim leader
  • You see your business plateauing and need to find new ways to grow
  • You have a limited budget but would prefer putting it towards hiring an expert with a proven track record on a short-term contract as opposed to a mid-senior in-house resource

Especially during challenging times like the COVID-19 crisis, when most organizations are struggling to remain in business, investing in expert resources like these could mark a pivotal moment in your organization’s life.

According to Yelp’s 2020 Local Economic Impact Report, because of the pandemic, business closures continue to rise nationally.

The sectors that are hit the hardest are:

  • Restaurants
  • Shopping and retail
  • Beauty and spas
  • Bars and night life
  • Fitness
The sectors that struggle the most during COVID-19
[Source: Yelp]

So, if your organization operates under some of those sectors, then considering business consulting services can come quite handy in difficult times like these.

Why Should Small Businesses Consider Business Consulting Services?

According to the US Small Business Administration, in 2020 there were 31.7 million small businesses in the country.

But will all of them survive?

If we look at the US Bureau Of Labor Statistics’ table on the survival of private-sector establishments by opening year, we can conclude that about:

  • 20% of small businesses fail within the first year
  • 33% of them fail within two years
  • 50% of them fail within five years
  • 66% of them fail within 10 years

The reasons behind these failures may vary from lacking a business model to having the wrong team on board and getting outcompeted.

Running a small business is hard work and these insights support this fact. Despite having a great product, sometimes it may be difficult to drive sales.

And one of the biggest mistakes companies make is trying to keep their business going without the benefit of a repeatable sales process.

A business growth consultant can help you execute a proper strategy and find employees with the right skill set so that your company can cut through the noise, attract the right audience and discover new revenue streams that will push your business forward.

How To Choose The Right Business Growth Consultant To Partner With

When selecting the best business growth consultant for your needs, make sure you consider the following key factors:

  • Portfolio: The best way to assess a consultant’s past experience is through portfolios and case studies. See what projects they have worked on, what type of clients they have partnered with and what industries they have served to understand if their experience is applicable. A best practice to follow is to hire a partner who has owned or owns a successful business and has worked with clients in the same or similar sector and partnered with businesses that match yours in style, size, needs and goals. This will help you find a consultant with a track record to back up their promises.
  • Communication skills: Business consultants should have strong communication skills. This matters because it will allow both them and their clients to understand information more accurately and quickly. These experts should be able to convey ideas clearly, discuss problems, request information and more. Above all, consultants should also be good listeners. To pass on their knowledge and deliver advice they should be capable of absorbing and understanding your needs properly.
  • Problem-solving skills: Problem-solving is all about being creative, using logic and being able to make a sense of a situation to find a solution for a specific problem. And just because business consulting services are all about identifying problems and creating strategies to solve them, the consultant you hire should be an excellent problem solver. Your partner should also possess a set of other related skills including innovative and creative thinking and analytical skills.
  • Approach: Before you sign the contract with your consultant, make sure he or she takes a personalized approach and can provide you with a solution crafted exclusively for you. The partner you hire should take the time to understand your business needs and goals, perform research on your organization and key competitors and then create a plan of action that will help your business tackle challenges and meet your goals.
  • Reviews and references: Client reviews and recommendations will serve as proof of the business growth consultant’s credibility. They will showcase their prowess, overall client satisfaction, the manner and speed of communication, flexibility and transparency in project implementation and more. All this is valuable info that you can use to judge which consultant can best suit your needs and execute a successful project.

10 Questions To Ask Business Consultants Before Hiring The Right One

Ask every potential business growth consultant the following questions to help you make the right choice:

  1. What areas will your services cover?
  2. Have you ever worked with clients in the same or similar sector and what results have you helped them achieve?
  3. What is your approach towards consulting? How will you create a strategy that appeals to my unique needs and goals?
  4. How many other projects are you currently operating? Do you have enough time to focus on my business?
  5. How often will we communicate?
  6. Can I see what’s included in the contract? What happens if we terminate it?
  7. Are my goals realistic?
  8. How long will it take to see the desired results?
  9. What’s the estimated duration of the project?
  10. What is your pricing policy and how much do you charge?
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Takeaways On Business Consulting Services

A business growth consultant has the ability to recognize the companies’ biggest challenges and offer solutions so that they can increase efficiency and profitability.

The biggest benefits of considering professional business consulting services are:

  • Clear and unbiased perspective
  • Extensive knowledge and relevant experience
  • Cost reduction and time-saving
  • Valuable resources
  • Customized and result oriented approach

All businesses who want to advance, no matter what size they are or what sector they belong to, should invest in a business growth consultant if they don’t have the expertise in-house.

To choose the most suitable partner for your needs, consider the following factors:

  • Prior experience
  • Communication skills
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Approach
  • Reviews and references
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