Together We Make Our World Better aka The Ubiquitous Consultant
Ubiquitous: existing or being everywhere at the same time; constantly encountered; WIDESPREAD (merriam-webster.com).
Consultants are everywhere. We are in many fields: technology, business, education, health, and (my favorite!) nonprofit work. We offer many different services: interim management, tax advice, image consulting, and market-entry assistance, to name just a few. The abundance of consultant options seems redundant and meaningless.
Why did I join the ranks of this ubiquitous lot? I love nonprofits. I believe they are critical to the well-being of our world. Nonprofits accomplish what governments and the for-profit world cannot. They offer goods and services to those who could not otherwise afford them.
I became a consultant to strengthen nonprofits, enabling them to effect more change. As an independent consultant, I can set prices to ensure the value received is significantly greater than a nonprofit's investment. That is important to me.
Have you heard the joke about the consultant and the shepherd? It's a good one; check it out! Like most good jokes, it holds a few grains of truth.
We don't know your business as well as you do. Look for a consultant who is upfront about this and who seeks to understand better what you do. My first consultation with a client is free with no obligations. I want to listen, prod, and dig to discover what is happening. The goal is to find out what the client needs, which is unclear to them.
We tell you what you already know. This is true, but it is a good truth. We listen and ask questions to tease out what is happening. Really happening. Our distance from the day-to-day enables us to see common threads throughout the different examples you give us so we can tie them together. Often, you will have that "Aha!" moment as your consultant explains what they see. You may already know what we tell you, but you will not see it without us.
All Joking Aside
Consultants offer companies a cost-efficient way of obtaining outside expertise in many different areas without adding more people to the payroll. Being a consultant is an honor. We get to walk alongside businesses, provide insight and direction, and enjoy watching them change for the better.
To bring more value to nonprofits, I started this blog to share industry updates and best practices. This information is for you if you're a board member, nonprofit leader, or work in a nonprofit.