Scaling Your Business - When It's Time to Hire a Startup Consultant
Once your business reaches over $500k in annual recurring revenue, it's an exciting milestone. However, continuing to scale profitably presents new challenges. Before spending valuable budget on a high-priced growth consultant, there are som key mistakes to avoid. This article will help you discover what they are.
Not Defining Your Growth Goals and Metrics
As an established profitable company, you must have clear goals before engaging a consultant. Specific, quantitative goals for revenue growth, new customer acquisition, market expansion etc. This enables selecting the right consultant and holding them accountable to drive results.
Define metrics focused on growth ahead of time. Track and review them regularly to determine if the consultant is delivering ROI and impact. Don't leave goals vague or open to interpretation.
Hiring a Generalist Rather Than Specialist
At your stage, a general business consultant is likely not the best fit. Seek specialists with proven experience directly applicable to your biggest growth challenges and goals.
Whether you need help optimizing sales processes, building partnerships, expanding internationally or developing new products, find a consultant who specializes in that specific area. Laser focus is key.
A Consultants Cultural Fit
Technical skills alone don't ensure a successful consulting engagement. Vet consultants thoroughly for culture fit. They must share your values, work style, ethics and commitment to your customers and your team.
Look beyond resumes to intangibles. A growth consultant at odds with your company culture can damage morale, productivity and retention. Invest time upfront to ensure alignment.
No Insights or Access to New Data
While an outside perspective is valuable, consultants must bring more to the table. Seek data-driven insights you lack on customer behavior, market trends, competitor activity and emerging opportunities.
Demand access to research, tools and datasets you don't currently have in-house. Expanding your knowledge base accelerates good decision making.
No Plan for Accountability and Governance
Don't hand off growth initiatives fully to an outside consultant without an accountability structure. Establish processes for monitoring their activities, results and ROI.
Creating the right governance model ensures the consultant delivers value, not just advice. Their fee should tie directly to impact on key growth metrics.
Hiring a consultant isn't the answer, hiring the right consultant is. At your stage of growth, hiring a consultant can provide leverage. But regular tracking and oversight is imperative. With the right focus, capabilities and compatibility, consultants augment your team to help scale your business to the next level. If you don't want to put in the time to find the perfect consultant, our team can do it for you. Click here to get started.