There are many areas to evaluate when determining a TRUE net profit and special consideration needs to be given to every area, since each function will have a direct influence on your net profit and how you conduct business now and in the future. All too often, owners are either in denial regarding their true net profit or just do not know how to arrive at determining the true net profit. Understanding the consequences of each will have a direct bearing on your involvement and need for action.
Consulting is a partnership. By that I mean we must work closely and candidly together. The following questions are necessary for us to start and by answering these questions you will save an enormous amount of time, money and anguish down the road. Please answer these questions as honestly as possible. This may be uncomfortable or embarrassing but it must be done to achieve the goals of the company. My job is to show you the difference between perception and reality.
- Is your company where you expected it to be at this time?
- Do you have specific goals for the firm and personally? What are they?
- What are the top five problem areas that you would like me to address?
- Why do you think that the problems are occurring?
- How long has your organization had the problems?
- Have you tried to solve the problems? If so, how? What happened?
- What are your objectives?
- Are there any organizational obstacles in the way of implementing my recommendations?
- Are you and your management team committed to making the organizational changes needed to make this a success?
- What measurable outcomes do you want to see at the end of our work together?
- How do you see your role during the course of our work? After completion?
- Are you committed to have me be responsible for helping to implement the recommendations?
- Do you have any personal concerns about this?
- How soon would you like me to start?
I define or help you to uncover what the problems or perceived problems are within your organization. I will help you to define reality. I will help you define what is real and what is just perceived because I will approach things from a different perspective. I define the difference between doing business and personal relationships if they are affecting the bottom line of the business.
Define the problems through your eyes
I will define the problem through your eyes. What I specifically recommend is that we must consider the role you, as the owner, want to play in your business now and in the future. I will look at the problem down the line. I will go two or three levels deep, over a longer period of time in order to prevent a ‘quick fix’ from taking place. ‘Quick fixes’ are merely band-aids over problems, which if addressed head on, will prevent major surgery from needing to be done.
Formulate a pathway to a solution
Each time you are faced with a different challenge, you feel the need to go out and get the resources to find the solution. This requires putting together one or several different resources. As an experienced consultant, I am a resource. Finding the solution may require working with a qualified consultant and together tackling the project.
I approach problem solving by the following:
- Brainstorm possible solutions together to add a wider variety of options.
- Consider the implications of each possible solution.
- Weigh alternatives and narrow the focus.
- Pick the best courses of action.
I will provide you with feedback necessary to expedite an educated decision:
- Present project background, goals and methodology.
- Present recommendations.
- Discuss in depth the recommendations.
- Jointly decide on a course of action.
- Determine my role in future activities.