When you think of business consultants, you probably imagine a scene of suits and ties lined up like the military being deployed to tackle the enemy.

Despite this negative image, many people desire a consultant position because of the recognition of it being a high-skilled profession.

However, those considering the consultant profession should take heed of the meaning of what consulting really means as described below.

A consultant analyzes the client’s problems through academic knowledge and field experiences to create a better future for the business. Different consultants have different personalities, such as objective consultants, goodwill mediators, problem solvers, coaches, and teachers who each display distinct characteristics similar to animals.

The Beaver 

Beaver-type consultants work hard and are oriented toward studying the past to improve the future.

The Fox

Fox consultants have strengths in problem-solving. They are good at analyzing the current problem through troubleshooting. 

The Owl

The third type of consultant is the owl. Owl consultants have excellent insight, are interested in the future and good at strategy formulation and business planning.

The Dolphin

And finally, Dolphin-type consultants are relationship-oriented. They are also interested in the future and excel in organizational culture, coaching, and education.

What skills and attitudes are you looking for in a consultant, especially as a small business? It is handy to know there are three critical qualities to look for in a consultant.

* Problem-Solving skills
* Project Management skills
* Communication skills

Problem – Solving

Problem-solving abilities require a degree of objectivity, endless curiosity, inductive reasoning, analysis, and synthesis. The consultant must possess fact-based thinking, hypothesis-driven analysis, and benchmarking techniques are essential for solving problems.

Project Management 

Project Management capability is essential for consulting projects. There are also national standards to know related to project management decisions. Collaboration and customer relations between teams are also important.

Communication Skills

Communication is deeply related to personality, regardless of how much skill the consultant may possess. Consultants should use interviews and listening skills to communicate effectively, backed up with written documents of what was discussed.

In addition to these abilities and qualities, it is necessary for the consultant to have diverse knowledge and experience in small businesses logistics. A doctorate or MBA degree can help, but in today’s fast-paced world, field experience is almost as relevant. Therefore, constant learning about the field of consulting is essential. An excellent consultant will have industry knowledge, small business knowledge, process systems, and prolific in ICT.

Attitude is also critical, especially for impartiality thinking. “My clients’ interests are also my interests,” should be a consultant’s daily mantra. Other attitude characteristics include, but are not limited to positive thinking, courtesy, acceptance of change, and continuous learning.

⚠️ A small business consultant has: Goals and Vision, Challenging Spirit, Creativity, Passion, Logical Thinking

⚠️ A small business consultant has: Customer-Oriented Mind, Posses Objectivity, Leadership Qualities, Affinity, Cooperation

⚠️ A small business consultant has above all: Unbreakable Spirit and Fortified Strength

Must have consultant credentials are:

(1) To have worked in a business company in positions such as Human Resources for at least five years. Having a solid foundation to use existing knowledge in real businesses is a fundamental way to increase experience. If a consultant doesn’t have long-term business experience but has an MBA or doctoral degree is nothing more than a resume line.

(2) Constant learning and studying create ongoing advancement toward further expertise.

(3) Client trust begins early in the project. Guidelines are determined within a day, and ongoing communication continues throughout the project.

(4) The ability to identify small business management techniques to develop insights into the nature of the business. Surprisingly, many strategic consultants are ignorant of finance and accounting.

Whether you work with a beaver, fox, owl, or dolphin-type consultant; the skills, experience, trustworthiness, technical knowledge, and communication qualities are what makes for the type of consultant perfect for your small business.