Effective Business Consulting Has Given Rise to a New Breed of Leaders

Business consulting has grown quickly, with growth rates of the industry exceeding 20% in the 1980s and 1990s. As a business service, providing consulting solutions remains highly cyclical and linked to overall economic conditions. The consulting industry shrank during the 2001-2003 period, but has been experiencing slowly increasing growth since. In 2007, total global revenues for business consulting exceeded the $300 billion mark.

A number of specializations have come into existence, namely information technology consulting, human resource consulting, and others, many of which overlap, and most of which are offered by the large diversified consultancies listed below. So-called “boutique” consultancies, however, are smaller organizations specializing in one or a few of such specializations.

In the current scenario, these types of consulting firms can be divided broadly into four categories:

1. Large, diversified organizations that offer a range of services, including information technology consulting in addition to a strategy consulting practice (e.g. Accenture, Deloitte). Some very large IT service providers have moved into consultancy as well and are also developing strategy practices (e.g. Satyam)
2. Medium-sized information technology consultancies that blend boutique style with some of the same services and technologies bigger players offer their clients.
3. Large management and strategic consulting specialists that offer primarily strategy consulting but are not specialized in any specific industry
4. Boutique firms, often quite small, which have focused areas of consulting expertise in specific industries or technologies. Most of the boutiques were founded by famous business theorists. Small firms with less than ca. 50 employees are often referred to as niche consultancies. If they have a unique concept and market it successfully, they often grow out of this segment very fast or are bought by larger players interested in their know-how.
Business consulting is becoming more prevalent in non-business related fields as well.

As the need for professional and specialized advice grows, other industries such as government, quasi-government and not-for-profit agencies are turning to the same managerial principles that have helped the private sector for years. One important and recent change in the industry has been the spin-off or separation of the consulting and the accounting units of the large diversified firms. For these firms, which began business as accounting firms, management consulting was a new extension to their business. But after a number of highly publicized scandals over accounting practices, such as the Enron scandal, accountancy began divestiture of their management consulting units, to more easily comply with the tighter regulatory scrutiny that followed.

The Secrets To Succeed In Your Online Business

All businesses no matter no matter how small has one thing that they all share in common which is the fact that they all depend on their ”customers” to be able to succeed. Customers play a vital and important role in the success of a business. They make or break a business. They should be treated with all the respect in the world. In order to make profits, all businesses need to first of all attract, hold and maintain its clientele. You need to have an excellent customer support service department that looks into all these vital tasks of making sure that your customers gain that much needed confidence in you and will stick with you come rain or sunshine.

The role of customer support service in online business is guided by principles and the principles remain the same both in online and offline businesses. The one in which becomes very crucial in online business is the customer support service. You can load your website with many details, FAQs, instructions and description as you want, and still the customers will be willing to communicate with you or your customer service representative before making a buying decision.

The importance in dealing with the after sales queries is also very crucial because customers always have complaints which you must be willing to have adequate answers to. Your service agents should be capable and equipped enough to manage resentful customers because their word of mouth will affect your company’s image positively or negatively.

The three most used types of supports for online customers are:

1. Live Chat

2. Email Support

3. Telephone Helpline

Live Chat:

A lot online businesses are now providing ”Live Chat” option for their customers. Their customers are not required to log into some messenger services. All they need to do is click on the live chat icon and a new window will pop up where they can type their messages, which will be replied by the customer service representative accordingly. There are many services available on the internet to help you in providing these features for your online customers.

Email Support:

This is the most widely used and most convenient for any online business irrespective of its nature and it is a must that you have it. You provide your customers e-mail so that they can write out their complaints, comments and concern in detail. They do not need to wait for business hours before doing that, and it affords the business and the customers a chance and privilege to explain clearly their position in an explicit way.

Telephone Helpline:

Giant businesses all over the world largely depend on telephone help lines as their most important source to providing an unflinching 24/7 support to their customers. This method is a little bit on the high side financially and not really mandatory for small businesses. However, this can be very effective but if you are able to afford such services then try and go for it. This is also the fastest way to respond to your customers’ needs and complaints.