Management Consulting: How can it help your business?
If you’re a business owner looking to improve your operational workflow or overcome structural challenges in your business, then a third party or external Management Consultant may be an avenue for you to explore.
At Madeira Company, our team of Management Consultants work with you to identify problems with your business and improve your operational structure. In this article, we’ll take an in-depth look at the role of management consulting and the benefits it can have for small and established businesses. Management Consultants offer a wide range of value to businesses in many different sectors. From financial markets to technology and pharmaceutical companies, to small start-ups and growing teams with a defined vision, who perhaps need another set of eyes to realise their goals.
What are Management Consultants?
Management Consultants are third-party or external teams of business experts, who examine every aspect of your business and offer advice on improvements that lead to profitability. They not only advise you but work with you to deliver the answer.
They can help you make better, more informed decisions, reduce costs, develop improved technology strategies, and build a more effective organisation.
How do Management Consultants work?
To begin, they work with you to understand your organisational structure. Dissecting your operations, competitive dynamics, company culture, objectives, and challenges. They see your business with a fresh set of eyes, but most importantly, they work to your agenda and not their own. They can apply their insights to your strategic and operational issues and help you overcome barriers that you may not even realise existed.
We can break down the role of a management consultant into five parts:
Understanding and defining the problem
When assessing a business, a management consultant will look at the business operations as a whole and identify any weaknesses that need to be addressed. As a business, if you can specify an individual area for focus, then the consultant can identify a specific challenge that is being faced.
A client may add bias or mixed information when explaining a problem. For example, a client is planning to move their business, or create a branch in a new market. They may have the expectations that former strategies will work in this market, which may not be accurate in the current climate.
The role of a management consultant is to filter information from the client so they can identify the specific challenge being faced. In this example, they may identify that the client’s biggest challenge would be gaining a share of the market and aligning themselves with the competition. Once the scope of the problem has been clearly defined, the management consultant can begin to frame their approach.
Deciding on the correct approach to solving the problem.
Consultants have specific and individual approaches to problem-solving, that they have developed through their years of experience. Typically, a consultant will travel to the business, collect data and observe business practices, conduct employee interviews and examine day-to-day operations. With a more hands-on approach, the consultant will be in a better position and propose more effective solutions.
Management Consultants are known for their ability to collect and analyse data and implement a data-driven solution. This offers a unique, unbiased, and methodical approach to problem-solving. With data readily available, it is easy to convey this information to the client and propose a solution they can understand and place their trust in.
Once the problem has been identified, observed, and analysed, it’s time to present the solution. Management Consultants will break solutions down into ‘Deliverables’.
Deliverables allow a consultant to break down a solution into tangible results. If a problem is considered large or overwhelming for the client, then breaking it down into individual deliverable components can make the project more manageable and offer a clear timeline for seeing the predicted results.
Client Follow Up
Once the problem has been identified and the suggested steps have been followed, it is time again to run further analysis and determine the effect of the work. This could be evaluated in several ways depending on the type of business and the perceived goal. Whether it is tracking sales, calculating savings on operational costs, or evaluating new customer acquisitions in a new market, it should be straightforward to quantify the results.
Are there different types of Management Consultants?
Management Consulting is a diverse field and can be applied to every industry. Typically, there are six types of management consultants, and a specialist in a particular field may be more suited to your area of business than another.
Strategic Consultants offer a third-party view of high-level problems. These are specific problems that most businesses do not face often or have little to no experience in managing. These consultants may have extensive knowledge of a specific industry and can be brought on board for the duration of a project, or to identify issues with the corporate structure. Something that an employee does not have the time to do, or appropriate knowledge to apply to the job.
Information Technology Consultant
IT consultants allow their clients to develop and apply IT solutions throughout the business. From identifying new and improved technology to implementation and training, their specialist and practical knowledge can allow for a more streamlined integration of new technologies and software.
Accounting (Financial Advisory Consultant)
Typically, Financial Consultants work for large management consulting firms such as PWC, KPMG or Deloitte. They analyse an organisation’s financial capability, financial reporting and can offer insight into improving cash flow and generating investment and tax advantages.
Internal Consultants are generally tasked with providing management consulting services from within the company itself. They are essentially employees of the organisation, and their role is to propose new strategies and identify areas for growth.
Internal consultants had a deep understanding of business procedures, policies and operations and can provide valuable insight, leading to greater profitability.
Independent Consultants may be small teams of 2-6 or an individual. They may not be associated with a larger firm or company and are considered industry veterans and experts in their field. When working with an independent consultant, they may have more flexibility in the scope of projects they are able to work on.
Human Resource Consultant
HR Consultants can work with you to find the right talent for your team. Whether your company is in a period of growth, or you are planning to work in a new sector, then an HR consultant can help you effectively fill a newly created position.
They can also work with your existing team, improving performance, analysing organisational problems, management, and retirement planning. They may also be involved in transforming a company’s culture or implementing new systems and processes that relate to your HR team.
Why choose MC Contabilidade?
If you’re a business owner in Madeira or Portugal and are assessing whether a Management Consultant could benefit your business, then speak to a member of the Madeira Company team today. Our team of experts can work with you, to your schedule, and offer valuable insight into your operations and business structure.