When you’re starting a business, there’s a lot to learn and a lot of new terrains to navigate. But one thing you have to understand is that the business world is a cluttered landscape. Once you open your doors, you’ll be competing against thousands of similar businesses like yours – both startups and more established companies. You have to make sure that you stand out among your competitors.
It’s been said that there are two types of people in the world: those who figure things out and those who consult experts. For new business owners and startup founders, it’s often tempting to try to figure things out on your own. But at some point, you’ll likely reach a limit and need to seek expert advice to grow and scale your business.
Unfortunately, not all business owners know when the best time is to seek help. Outlined in this article are six times when it’s imperative to consult an expert rather than trying to go at it alone.
6 times when it’s imperative to consult an expert
- You’re not an expert in a specific area.
As a business owner, you will have your strengths and weaknesses, and it’s always wise to focus on your strengths when running your business. But as your business goes, you’ll eventually have to deal with the other aspects of your business – even those you’re not good at.
But what better way to successfully handle the tasks you’re not good at than to get a consultant to help you with it? Hiring a consultant and expert ensures that the job is done right. With years of knowledge and experience on their sleeve, they can help you solve problems and achieve your goals. Plus, most consultants actually enjoy the work so that you can be assured of high-quality results.
- You’ve tried it on your own and failed.
Have you ever experienced trying something only to fail in the end? It can be frustrating and time-consuming.
One good example of this is accounting. At the beginning of your business, you may be working on a tight budget and decide to do your books yourself for the first year. However, if you have little to no background in accounting, you may not know where to start, or how to account for your finances. With that, you become more prone to mistakes and potentially lose hundreds of dollars in profits or possibly tax penalties.
There are a lot of instances where businesses may forgo hiring an expert. However, your reluctance to hire an expert will cost you more in the long run. Instead of wasting your time doing something you constantly fail at, hire an expert. You’ll thank yourself in the end.
- You’re stuck on an idea.
If you ever feel like you’ve been working on an idea for far too long, it may be time to bring in an expert. It could be a marketing campaign that you’ve been stalling for a while now or a project that requires the right expertise.
Consultants are people with years of experience in their respective fields. Some may even be retired business owners who have switched to full-time business consulting. If anyone can help you launch your ideas, it’s them.
Experts also serve as a fresh set of eyes. They can look at your project and see things from a different perspective. From there, they can spot weak areas or mistakes, so you can improve your campaigns and launch them as soon as possible.
- You need an unbiased opinion.
One of the most common issues that companies face is a difference in opinion between the stakeholders. As a result, it becomes harder for the managers to reach a final decision.
To break this cycle, consider seeking expert advice. Business consultants can add perspective to your strategies. After all, experts have the knowledge and experience to provide accurate information. They also have the ability to think objectively, which means they’re less likely to be influenced by personal biases. And because they’re typically well-versed in the latest research, you can be confident that you’re getting the most up-to-date information.
- Your business isn’t growing.
Some businesses may experience stagnant growth. Stagnant doesn’t necessarily mean that no work is happening. You and your team may be working hard, but you’re seeing no results. Your revenues aren’t increasing, and you’re not seeing a growth in your business. In other words, you’re experiencing stagnation.
When there’s effort but not much results, it may be time to bring in the big guns. Business consultants are well-versed with the ins and outs of business planning. While it may have taken you months of planning, strategizing and experimenting, experts can turn things around within a matter of weeks. This gives you enough time to keep up, or better yet, stay ahead of your competitors.
- You’re launching a new business or expanding.
Starting another business or expanding your current one is a big decision. It requires a significant amount of financial investment. With that, it’s perfectly understandable why many business owners may be reluctant to seek an expert’s advice. But in reality, refusing to hire a consultant can cost you more in the long run.
Starting a business or expanding is hard enough without having to worry about all the little details. An expert can help you navigate the waters and advise you on things like branding, marketing and finances. They can offer a fresh perspective on your ideas, allowing you to improve and make sure that your plans are future-proof.
While growth may not happen immediately, especially when you’re still at the early stages, once your strategies get enough traction, you’ll eventually be able to see the reflection of your efforts on your company’s financials.
The best places to find an expert or consultant
When you’re ready to find a good business partner to help you, here are the best avenues you can meet and connect with potential business consultants.
- Business conferences
Business conferences are teeming with participants who are either business owners or retired big-shot business owners who may be willing to do consulting jobs on the side. Try talking to them about strategies and discuss what you did with your business. You can ask them if they would be willing to work with you in improving your company’s processes or any aspect of your business you might not be doing well in.
- Your established network
If you have a network, leverage the relationships you’ve established. Like hiring an employee, you need someone you can trust and one that is proven to deliver results. Ask them if they encountered the same problem in the past and if they can help you with it.
If they can’t help, ask them if they know anyone who is an expert on the topic. Getting recommendations from the people you trust increases the chances of getting a favorable outcome.
- Social media
Most professionals are on social media these days. LinkedIn, for example, is full of professionals who are experts on at least one aspect of the business. Their network in the platform may tag them as an expert on entrepreneurship, marketing, finance, etc. All you have to do is search for a keyword, and LinkedIn will show a list of people on its results page.
- Freelance websites
If you’re looking for an expert for specific solutions, freelance websites like Fiverr and Upwork are also excellent places to look for experts. You can enter keywords like “marketing expert,” “website design” and other areas where you might need help. They will then show different talents to help you with what you need.
When it comes to growing your business, don’t be afraid to ask for help from the experts. They can offer you a fresh perspective and help you solve problems faster than trying to figure them out yourself. By leveraging the knowledge and experience of experts, you can take your business to new heights.