Extended Role of Management Consultants

Over the recent years the idea of management consultants have changed dramatically in both, management consulting and in other professional services. Management consultants have started to rethink and redefine their business, widening and enhancing their service offerings, merging or establishing alliances with other consultants and professional service firms, and abandoning self-imposed restrictions on the sort of work they are prepared to undertake. These changes have been triggered by a number of factors, including the growing complexity and sophistication of doing business in national and inter- national environments, market deregulation and liberalization, new opportunities for innovative consulting, growing demand for integrated and “one-stop” professional services, competitive pressure coming from other professions and, above all, the advancement of information technologies and their rapid penetration into management and business processes. In using consulting and other professional services the clients are asking “what will add value to my business”. Rather than identifying needs, devising a solution and implementing a new and “tailor-made” system for every client, a consulting firm has a range of products that are offered to all clients (or categories of clients).

Advice and know-how have turned into a commodity. The client can choose among standard offerings “off the shelf” – diagnostic instruments, change and project management programmes, training and self- development packages, production control systems, enterprise resource planning or customer relationship management systems, e-business or knowledge management software and so on.

Commoditization of methods and systems is currently a feature of knowledge management and transfer. It responds to demands from clients, who want to get the best system, methodology or approach at an affordable price, within reasonable time limits, and with a guarantee of applicability and standard performance. This is what the commoditized professional services aim to provide. Professional service providers who have commoditized their knowledge enjoy an enormous business advantage – if the product is in demand and sells well. They can serve large numbers of clients. Instead of using experienced and highly competent consultants for each assignment, the consulting firm can develop standard procedures for delivering standard products, and hence use more junior and less experienced staff, and cut the price.

In larger IT and management consulting firms, outsourcing has become the fastest-growing area of service and an indispensable source of stable and long- term income. This reflects the fact that the consulting firm may be better equipped to carry out certain activities, which it can perform more efficiently and economically than the client while keeping up to date with advances in the field. It also reflects new ways of doing business and managing knowledge, in which clients focus on their core business and use intellectual capital and financial resources in areas of their principal strength.

Consulting in finance, including financing the enterprise and financial control of operations, also started developing rapidly. A number of the new management consultants had a background in accountancy and experience drawn from working with firms of public accountants. To meet their clients’ needs and to attract clients from new sectors of economic and social activity, management consultants have developed various strategies, creating and offering new special services, specializing in particular sectors or, on the contrary, providing broad comprehensive packages of services.

In recent years consultants have stepped out of the traditional limits of the management field and deal with plant automation, communication systems, quality control, equipment design, software development, economic studies, environmental protection and the like if these are of interest to clients and can enhance a consultant’s competitive edge. In addition to improving service quality and offering new sorts of services, management consultants have become more dynamic and even aggressive in searching for new clients and trying to convince potential clients that they can offer a better service than others. This has brought about many developments in the advertising and marketing of consulting services.

Many large consulting firms have sought to internationalize their operations in searching for new markets, adapting to the changes in the international economy, and taking advantage of the new opportunities for consulting in the developing countries. In large consulting firms, foreign operations may contribute 30-70 per cent of income. Great efforts have been made to increase the long-term benefits derived by clients from consulting assignments, by diversifying and perfecting the intervention methods applied at all stages of the consulting process. Many organizations private and public have become experts in using consultants. They have developed their own criteria and methods for selecting consultants, collaborating with them during assignments, monitoring their interventions, learning from their approach and evaluating results. Consultants have become indispensable advisers in major business decisions and transactions.

Who is Your Best Personal Finance Consultant?

Managing personal finance is a skill, actually a very important skill, and hence can be learned like any other skill in this life. No body is born with this skill. Even the best financial managers who control the budgets of the biggest companies in the world can be bad at managing their personal finance if they have not been trained on. Did you know, for instance, that most of those who consider themselves experts in managing personal finance, including the humble author, have suffered a lot from financial crises in their life that you might not even be able to imagine??!! The good news though is that if those great managers have made their way through those crises and survived their impacts, then you stand a very good chance of improving your management skills and becoming more successful in your life.

How do people learn personal finance management skills??!! Well, people can learn these skills from different resources and in different ways. They can learn them from their parents, friends, colleagues, spouses, or most commonly from their experiments and experiences. However, there are people who can repeat the same mistake for many times without realising that. This type of people need guidance and someone to tell them that they are wrong or that there is something they are not doing the right way. Also, there are people who find it difficult to master something without having a manual, a guide, or a mentor. This article can act as that voice that tells you ‘Go Ahead’ when you do something right and ‘Don’t Even Think of Going Near That’ when you do something wrong. This book can be your guide on how to make the most from your tight budget and limited resources. The author has tried his best to make it the only One-Stop Guide you will ever need to best Manage your Personal Finance.

But first and before we go deep into details, let us define ‘Managing Personal finance’. This phrase dear reader has many definitions, but in a simple way it means the ways and methods that can help you make the most from your income or budget in a way that it best covers your expenses and in some cases leaves you with some money to save.

Now being aware of what Managing Personal Finance means, who or what do you think should you consult to get the best advice about managing your personal finance?? Should you consult books like this one?? Should you consult experts in this area or attend courses about this issue?? Should you consult your parents, friends, or those people that you trust the most?? Should you consult those people whom you consider successful in that issue and good at managing their financial matters?

No, actually none of those will be good enough to give you the best advice about managing your financial matters. Dear reader, your best consultant about managing your personal finance is ‘YOU’

Yes, it is you. You only can help yourself manage your personal finance the best way. You only can help yourself to get out of that ditch and be something special. All those mentioned above can be very helpful as tools you can use to show you the way or give you the tips about best strategies in doing things. They can even be very helpful in putting you on the right tracks towards becoming a better manager of your personal finance. But that is all. They can do nothing more than that. The rest depends on you. You only can make the choices that will make you the best personal manager of your finance like you are now making the killing choices that make you the worst manager. If you think that you cannot do this alone, then don’t waste your time with experts and courses for they will not be able to change anything in your life.

Your participation in this matter my friend is very important. It is actually a top requirement for you to be a better manager of your personal finance. So, if you currently are consulting a book, a course, an expert, a friend, or whatever… put in mind that they will not be able to help you much without your sincere participation and serious commitment. Don’t be surprised or disappointed of what you have just read because simply… you are capable of changing your life upside down and becoming the best financial expert in just a few years. Yes, you can. If you think that because of some minor financial problems and because of little shortage of money you are a bad manager of your finance or that you can never have control over your budget, I would tell you with assurance that you are wrong. You are an excellent manager of your finance and all that you need are some tips from this book and that course and some hard work from your side. In other words, this book is meant to give you some tips and enrich you with the author’s experiences and the positive expertise of some professionals that can put you on the right tracks towards controlling your expenditure. The rest is on ‘YOU’.

Business Consulting Certification – A Business Consulting Career

Business consulting, also called management consulting, is a career field that is becoming more popular with strategic planning consultants, finance consultants, business associates, supply chain management consultants, business analysts, financial analysts, process improvement consultants, and risk management consultants. Consultants work with company leaders in a variety of areas, including strategic planning, process efficiency, communications within the organization, and more. Though it is not a regulated industry in the United States, many client companies are beginning to hire for certified consultants over non-certified ones. Consulting certifications can be earned through a training course and qualifying exam.

Some traditional universities and college offer degree programs in management consulting but these are usually thousands of dollars and take years to complete. In contrast, business consulting certification training courses can cost under a thousand dollars and be completed in less than six months. The most flexible format for these courses is an online format. This flexibility allows students to keep their full-time jobs while pursuing the business consulting certificate. Lecture videos, study guides and memorization aids are all used to help students learn the fundamentals of business consulting. Theses guides and aids assist in preparing the students for the qualifying exam, increasing the success rate on first-time test takers.

Good business consulting certification courses also teach the best practices in the field of management consulting. Students learn how to structure consulting assignments most effectively. Client garnering and retention are addressed. Good courses also train their students in consulting delivery models and service line management. Marketing considerations, such as branding, are also considered. An overall view of business consulting as a business helps students confidently build their own consulting companies if that is their wish. However, some students are entry level workers for a consulting firm and simply want to advance in the company they already work for. Training courses are beneficial for both kinds of student.

Management consultants are in the business of increasing efficiency and productivity. However, making a business more efficient does not mean cutting out integrity. Business consulting certification training courses also teach the ethical and legal compliance issues in the consulting business. A less than reputable business name is a very difficult thing to overcome, so it behooves students to start out and stay strong in high business ethics. After passing the certification exam, business consultants can add the certification credential to their business cards, resumes, and websites. Some courses even offer resources and support after the completion of the course to help ensure continued success.