Consultants are essentially problem solvers.
They are spending each and every day first looking for problems, then evaluating them, coming up with a plan to counter them, and finally helping to execute that plan. But what sorts of problems do they solve?
7 examples of problems that consultants regularly solve are:
- Solving hurdles in business development
- Managing talent
- Identifying skill gaps & areas of improvement
- Providing guidance in difficult times
- Overcoming difficulties in organizational restructuring
- Helping with digital transformation obstacles
- Managing challenges in mergers and acquisitions
Below, I will discuss in detail these 7 common problems that consultants deal with.
1. Business Growth
Many companies aspire to achieve business growth yet struggle due to various challenges and complexities involved in the process.
Management consultants help companies grow and improve their performance in numerous ways, such as:
- Identifying new market opportunities for market expansion.
- Enhancing sales and marketing initiatives to boost performance.
- Assessing the product or service portfolio and pinpointing areas for expansion.
- Identifying strategic partnerships and collaboration prospects.
According to one of the Quora Contributors: “A great consultant brings knowledge, skills, experience, and process to improve the client’s condition and can help with marketing and sales development, business expansion and improvement.
2. Talent Management
A company’s success heavily depends on the quality of its workforce, and talent management strategies can ensure that they choose the right people for relevant job positions.
Consultants can assist organizations in developing a comprehensive talent strategy aligned with the overall business objectives by assessing
- the company’s needs
- market dynamics
- industry trends.
By utilizing the expertise of these consultants, companies can build a team of highly qualified employees that helps gain them a competitive advantage in the marketplace.
The table below describes the key steps in the talent management process of an organization.
|Planning||Identify skill gaps, create job descriptions for key roles, and develop a workforce plan for recruitment efforts.|
|Attracting||Determine whether to source talent internally or externally and attract applicants through job portals, social networks, and referrals.|
|Selecting||Conduct interviews and tests to identify and select the most qualified individuals.|
|Developing||Develop employees through various methods such as enhancing skills, providing counseling, mentoring, and implementing job rotation to foster loyalty and drive business success.|
|Retaining||Employ strategies such as promoting employees, offering career growth opportunities, and implementing rewards and recognition programs to retain top talent.|
|Transitioning||Prioritize individual employee growth and a sense of belonging by using transition tools like retirement benefits and succession planning.|
3. Performance Measurement and Guidance
Consultants help with performance measurement by providing objective insights into a company’s operations and processes.
They use data analysis and benchmarking to identify the key areas of improvement and develop strategies to optimize a firm’s performance. They also help companies set realistic goals and establish key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure progress toward them.
Consultants provide guidance to management on data collection and analysis and support them in utilizing it to make well-informed decisions.
4. Crisis Management
Crisis management involves identifying potential risks, creating a plan of action, and implementing it properly to minimize the impact of a crisis.
Consultants can play a crucial role in crisis management by offering their expertise in developing comprehensive response strategies, enabling organizations to maneuver through difficult circumstances and emerge stronger than before.
By working closely with management teams, consultants can help with communication strategies, allowing organizations to engage effectively with stakeholders during a crisis. They also assist in learning from previous problems, enhancing the organization’s response capabilities.
Boston Consulting Group (BCG), one of the Big Three consulting firms, employs the following procedures in response to a crisis:
- Use of Data and AI
- Ensure digital compliance
5. Organizational Restructuring
Organizational restructuring is crucial for companies to stay competitive, agile, and sustainable in today’s dynamic business environment.
By conducting in-depth analyses of an organization’s structure, processes, and culture, consultants recommend strategic changes to streamline operations, boost efficiency, and cut costs.
Furthermore, they also assist in change management by developing comprehensive communication plans and training programs to ensure a smooth transition for employees.
6. Digital Transformation
Digital transformation is essential in today’s fast-paced world as organizations must adapt to stay competitive and meet the evolving needs of their customers.
Management consultants foster digital transformation by evaluating a company’s digital capabilities and proposing improvement strategies. They also help manage organizational change, ensuring employees are equipped to work with new digital processes.
Additionally, consultants develop a roadmap for digital transformation, set goals and timelines for implementation, and measure progress along the way.
7. Mergers & Acquisitions
Mergers and acquisitions can offer companies numerous benefits but can also be risky and complex, requiring careful planning and negotiation.
Consultants play a critical role in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) as they bring their expertise and experience to help companies navigate the complex process.
With their specialized knowledge and skills, consultants can help firms enhance M&A success through strategic planning, team development, and a systematic approach.
They also play a vital role by adding value to the company through optimizing returns from divestitures, spin-offs, and alliances.
A few valuable insights provided by the consultant during M&A are described in the table below.
|Due diligence||Evaluate the risks of a company transaction, considering financial, commercial, and operational aspects.|
|Business Valuation||Provide expert valuation of your company or the target entity using comprehensive analytical methods.|
|Market research||Assist companies in understanding the market potential, identify risks and opportunities, analyze the target company’s market position, and determine the feasibility of the investment.|
|Post-merger integration||Offer valuable assistance with post-merger integration, ensuring a smooth transition and maximizing the value of the merged entities.|