The conference ROI slowly rose like a gator lifting its head from the swamp of negative numbers. But membership dues, product sales, and web analytics are sinking deeper into quicksand. Even facing a dismal scenario like this, the decision to call for outside expertise can be difficult.

I understand why leaders hesitate to hire a consultant. The search can be lengthy and time-consuming. There may be significant expense involved. The board expects you, as the CEO, to solve the problem, and you find yourself wondering why you and your team are not making progress. There are no definitive rules about when to give up fighting the good fight. However, there are signs that indicate when business as usual is no longer a viable strategy. It makes sense to bring a consultant on board if–

You need answers to these questions:

  • Why have our members lost interest?
  • How has our audience changed?
  • Who are our current competitors?
  • What services are our constituents seeking that we are failing to provide?

We all suffer from “the forest for the trees” syndrome. When you have a big problem, the cause can be difficult to untangle from the symptoms. Because consultants work across a spectrum of organizations, we can provide an accurate picture of where you stand in relation to the business environment, discover issues that are hiding in plain sight, and recommend solutions that you have probably not considered.

You want an expert’s assessment about your opportunities and challenges

Everyone has an opinion. Sometimes the facts get shoved into the back seat by the loudest voice. A consultant can be a big help in navigating a tricky political situation.

Typically, consultants have credentials that brand them as experts. They also come armed with data and analysis from many other engagements. In addition, they are experienced facilitators and trainers who understand group dynamics and can help you bring outliers into the fold.    

You want to take a big leap that involves significant transformation

Consultants have the expertise to support big leaps forward.

Positioning for the future is growing increasingly complex. A simple technology upgrade is no longer the answer to staying ahead of the pack. IT is the foundation for both electronic and operational systems that encompass every aspect of business.

Don’t squander resources trying to build your dream house with cinder blocks. This is a job for experts. Consultants erect skyscrapers on a regular basis. A consultant, whose job is to be fluent in the latest IT and systems integrations, can assess your readiness for change and sort through the multiple options. Let them partner with you to design a structure that will meet your goals.     

You need both short-term results and ongoing progress

Consultants are typically called on to address immediate challenges. But when the problem is solved, do you and your team have the discipline and the foresight to stay on track for the long haul? Consultants can provide you with tools to make follow-through consistent and easier to accomplish. They can also offer the opportunity for periodic check-ins to evaluate progress and determine whether revisions to the plan are needed.

Yes, consultants are prepared to rush in like the Avengers and save the day. We are often called on to do just that. But most of us would rather be Yoda than Captain America. We strive to be a trusted voice of expertise and experience guiding you toward your best possible future. So, don’t wait until you’re up to your neck in quicksand to call. Let us keep you where you need to be—closer to the stars than the swamp.