How We’re Different
We understand that oftentimes simply uttering the word “consultant” inside an organization can evoke audible moans and visible signs of eye rolling. We know executives and business owners who tell stories of horrible experiences with consultants. But whatever you call us – consultants, advisors, hired guns, outside resources – please don’t hate us because we’re consultants. We think we’re different for a variety of reasons. But first and foremost, we understand the negative perception that may accompany the term, and we’re OK with that. An article we read a couple of years ago in Business Insider titled “Why We All Hate Consultants and Why It’s Okay” (written by a business owner) opens this way:
When my company is stuck, I’m just as inclined to hire an outside advisor as other leaders are. But I hate it. Hiring a consultant means something needs to be fixed, or grown, or that I don’t know what to do next. I’m not talking about contractors whom I hire to do what I need and they are supplemental labor. I’m talking about the consultants where I hire them to advise me. Hiring them usually means we’ve already failed in our first effort at something. It mostly means we are vulnerable. We need something. So I believe we should all hate consultants. You probably already do. It’s okay. I give you permission.
Believe it or not, the rest of the article actually gets better. Or at least more interesting. Maybe by reading it, you will gain a new perspective. You can find the entire article at www.businessinsider.com/why-we-all-hate-consultants.
So let’s get back to how we’re different – and why you may want to consider working with us. As experienced business people, we’ve worked with consultants when we had “traditional jobs” in the corporate world. We have been in your shoes. In these roles, we had both good and less than satisfactory experiences with these service providers, but we came to understand the value of an outside perspective or the need to augment a team with a valuable skill set. We believe that great teams are often flexible – comprised of both internal staff and outside resources working together to execute a new strategy, seize new opportunities, launch a new product, or create strategic partnerships for growth. We have worked with countless clients that achieved more successful results, more quickly by working with us. See Clients and Industries Served.
We also know each organization is somewhat unique. We know that “one size” actually doesn’t “fit all.” Different clients have different needs and the solution you will need depends on the right assessment of the challenge and your capacity for implementing the solution. Most importantly, we believe that relationships make or break a project or engagement. Finally, based on our own practical hands-on experience prior to becoming consultants, we think the biggest value any company or business owner can derive from the use of outside resources such as ours includes the following:
- The one thing consultants have that owners or senior executives inside an organization don’t have is “perspective.” An outside perspective. We can see things in a kind of bare, naked, stripped down way. We don’t bring biases related to hierarchy, history with the organization, or personal relationships. We approach issues with neutrality.
- We’re comfortable with having tough conversations. We focus on the issue and not on the person or department. We help you maintain focus. We arbitrate discussions so solutions get created.
- We gather facts, sift through opinions and make sure we’re looking through the same lens when we’re discussing core issues and potential solutions. Creating this fact base for change creates alignment, picks up the pace of implementation and builds consensus on the changes that need to be made.
- We measure ourselves by the outcomes created – and we make sure those outcomes align with your expectations of us.
- We co-own the implementation of solutions and will check back with you on progress. We help you maintain focus on projects and priorities. Principals work and manage every engagement
- We have no preconceived notions about the length of an engagement with our clients. We work with you as long as you need us and with the flexibility that works best for your organization.
- Our fee structure makes us available to almost every type of organization – startup, emerging growth company, family business or closely-held enterprise, mid-cap company
Agile, Capable Network
Our principals have deep and practical experience in each of the six practice areas in which we work. We also have an experienced and talented group of professionals with whom we collaborate on a wide range of client projects. In addition to our expertise, we can augment our capabilities with specialists in:
- Organizational design
- Behavioral profiling, hiring assessments, and executive assessments
- CFO-level financial advisory services
- Capital connections
- Marketing implementation – website development, digital marketing, social media, advertising & PR
- Sales force automation, CRM, and marketing automation
- International growth and expansion
- Operations and supply chain expertise
- Technology commercialization and product development