How to Know When to Hire a Consultant

By Jan 30 , 20130 Comments

Consultants are an important part of the business world and hiring them is often the best thing that you can do when you find that your business has started to slip.Consultants are an important part of the business world and hiring them is often the best thing that you can do when you find that your business has started to slip.

What Kind of Consultant Should You Hire?
The type of consultant you hire is going to depend on the part of your business that needs to be fixed (or the type of business you run). If you’re having trouble with your financials or work in banking, you might consider hiring a firm like Profit Stars. If you’re having trouble with customer retention, a PR Firm could be the way to go.

Why Are Consultants Better Than In-House Employees or Your Own Eyes?
There are several reasons that hiring a consultant to help you fix your business is better than trying to do it yourself. Here are two of them.

Advanced Knowledge
It is a consultant’s job to be an expert in their field of choice. This means that they make the time to keep up on industry news and to learn about innovative techniques that will help their clients. As the business owner, you probably don’t have the time for this. Hiring a consultant gives you access to this level of knowledge without having to spend the weeks, months or even years learning it yourself.

Objectivity
A consultant didn’t build your business from scratch and isn’t emotionally involved in its outcome the way you are. He or she can look at your business the same way that you might look at a math problem. This might feel insulting to you. That’s okay-your business is your baby. Unlike a baby, however, it is important to be open to the idea that something about your business might be ugly.
This objectivity lends a perspective to things that you simply can’t have because you are too close. You are involved in your business every day and you’ve probably gotten into some bad habits and are used to making do with certain things. A consultant will help you figure out what works and what doesn’t. He or she can look at what you are already doing and find ways to do it more efficiently or more profitably.

When Should You Hire a Consultant?
If you are like most business owners, you are probably going to wait to hire a consultant until the last possible second. It’s normal to feel this way. Your ego wants to believe that you are the one who can swoop in and magically save your business after all. It’s better for everyone, however, if you bring the consultant in when you notice that things are sliding and aren’t getting better. It’s good to try to fix them yourself, but don’t let your ego destroy your business. If your efforts aren’t making things better within six months, bring in outside help. It’s easier for a consultant to help and revamp a business that still has some life in it than one that is right on the brink of death.

Despite the pre-conceived notions that many business owners may have regarding bringing on a consultant, they are an option that can provide valuable returns in both time and profits. Don’t let the fear of bringing in an outside contractor prevent your firm from benefitting from their expertise.