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7 Signs You Need Advisory Consulting

By  Erik Raper Erik Raper  on 2013-05-24 06:36:16  |  Featured in  Communications
Erik Raper
Posted By Erik Raper
in Communications
on 2013-05-24 06:36:16


There are many different indicators that your business could benefit from the advice and assistance of an advisory consulting firm. If it is failing or falling behind in any crucial area, there is a good chance that some outside help and a fresh perspective could be just what your team needs to get the business in order. Organizations tend to make some very common mistakes and often face similar issues that lead them to seek out advisory consulting services, and the extra help can be very beneficial in moving forward. These are some of the most common mistakes and issues that advisory consultants step in to assist clients with.

1. Profits are Dwindling

If your profits were soaring, but now they’re stagnating, it may be time to get some help from an advisory business consulting firm. They can look at your business structure and help with the big-picture ideas so you and your team can start getting your financial house in order and making more strategic decisions in the future.

2. Not Competing Like You Want to

Maybe you had a great share of the market starting out, but suddenly you’re seeing your customers go elsewhere or are struggling to keep up with new customers entering the market. This tends to be the case with businesses that have been successful for a long time. Businesses often require a fresh pair of eyes to see where they stand compared to the competition and how their target market perceives them.

3. Keeping Up With Staff Growth

It’s a great feeling when your business is growing and you’re able to hire new employees, but keeping up with the growth can often be tricky. Businesses that are going from a very small staff in a two or three-room office to an entire floor of a large building or even an entire building, for example, can make any number of mistakes and blunders as the staff grows and they fail to keep up with the logistical considerations. An advisory consulting expert will see all the mistakes, though, and know what works and what doesn’t when rapid growth necessitates increased employment.

4. Facing Technological Challenges

Technology is evolving at a rapid pace, and companies that fail to keep up will lose customers when they become obviously antiquated. Advisory business consulting firms often help businesses understand what the latest technology is and how to best harness it for the benefit of the company.

5. Internal Conflicts Keeping the Business from Being a Success

Sometimes consultants are brought in to help companies with more personal, internal issues. When businesses are struggling with internal conflicts, everything can begin to shut down. Sometimes, an advisory board is best qualified to analyze the conflicts from a neutral position and provide advice on potential solutions.

6. A Fresh Perspective

Sometimes, things are just off because the same voices have been heard for a long time without any fresh perspective. Companies often have close-knit management teams that have known one another for years, making it easy to get into a rut when they’re bouncing ideas off the same people all the time. In businesses that have been around a while, the management also might not get any fresh perspective from the long-term members of the team. After some time, when everyone’s been doing their job in a successful way for a very long time, the business can go into tunnel-vision mode. This is when an experienced business consultant’s advice can come in handy.

7. Expanding the Operation Without Careful Planning

Advisory consulting services can help prevent some serious blunders when businesses try to expand. Business owners often get overzealous when they see profits soaring and decide to expand their operations without really formulating a plan of action. This is a big mistake. Careful planning must go into each step of the expansion, from hiring new employees and changing the payroll structure to leasing new office space and moving to a larger content management system. Time and time again, businesses make the mistake of going into these major decisions with only the excitement of success, and little in the way of planning. An advisory consultant can help.

Erik Raper

Erik Raper

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Erik Raper heads Paragon’s Marketing and Advisory Services teams across focused industries. In this role, Mr. Raper leads his team to bring deep industry experience, rigorous analytical capabilities and a pragmatic mindset to clients’ most complex business problems. Mr. Raper’s team of marketing and strategy professionals work with Paragon’s Industry Leaders in the development of key go-to-market solutions which align to Paragon strengths and are essential to achieving clients’ business imperatives.

Before being appointed to his current position, Mr. Raper has served several key roles at Paragon including Director of Strategic Solutions Sales, Vice President of Strategy, and leader of Advisory Services. Mr. Raper guided the development of a suite of straight-through-processing (STP) solutions that focused on delivering business value–expanding Paragon’s Fortune 500 clientele and establishing the foundation for the firm’s brand platform: "Improving the Way Work Gets Done."

Prior to his appointment at Paragon in 2004, Mr. Raper spent seven years with Prudential Financial. As a vice president, he was instrumental in leading Prudential through a major operations and technology re-engineering in support of the company’s initial public offering. Preceding his employment with Prudential, he spent seven years with AT&T in various Marketing and Strategic Planning positions.

Mr. Raper holds a B.A. in Marketing from Columbus University, Metairie, Louisiana.

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