Today, there are plenty of business consultants surrounding the industry. How do you know who’s the right one? It can be difficult to adhere a good consultant as the business world is ever-changing .
What are some things to watch out for prior to signing a contract with a business consultant?
Usually, it is easy to poke out a bad consultant right off the bat: they over-exaggerate, make false promises, underdeliver, constantly try to reassure you about fixing mistakes they made, do not keep up with modernity and refuse to educate themselves with new material. Another thing to look out for is a consultant that is all about “I, I, I” instead of “We”. This means they prefer to work solo instead of working with the alongside with you every step of the way. There should be a team with a project manager supported by two, or even three other consultants with different skill sets. If you come across consultants that want to take on your project alone, just remember that one business plan consultant can’t be perfect at filling in the gaps.
Lack of experience is another thing to watch out for. Just because a consultant throws around a few terms doesn’t mean they have real knowledge. This is key because some consultants will try to lengthen the process simply because they may not know what to do for a certain situation.
Is your potential business plan consultant beating around the bush and continuously selling their services rather than listening to you?
If you don’t feel like you are getting answers to your questions, they may not be as experienced as they seem. A skilled and accomplished business plan consultant will take the time to answer every one of your questions so you feel confident and comfortable with the process. Time and money will be wasted if your business plan is written without a chance for your input.
Remember, a well-written business plan is the backbone of any company. Many entrepreneurs struggle to write a plan that is both comprehensive and intriguing. If this is true for you, it may be time to consider a business plan expert/consultant. As a matter of fact, finding a business plan consultant takes more than comparing prices. It may take a few interviews to find exactly the right consultant firm for your brand.
If your business plan consultant refuses a contract, or the contract only benefits their side of the agreement, consider this a red flag. A contract should be a two-way agreement, protecting both parties while clarifying goals, a time gram, and any other expectations that need to be met. If your request is denied for a signed contract, it is best you find a new consultant. Finally, make sure the firm you hire lays out their plan development process for you. They should begin with a thorough interview. If they don’t ask questions about your idea, research and basic business strategy, beware. A truly great business plan expert will want to work directly with you to create your business plan. After all, it’s no good to you if you don’t understand it!
The process should also include opportunities to revise your plan. A good business plan is a living document – it changes as your business grows and your market fluctuates.