After the Consultants have left the building – or Nanny McPhee and the impenetrable marketplace
You conducted research, found a large reputable company to provide you with insight into your new market. There is a slick process from initial discussion to report or completed grant/tender application, which makes it clear that you are working with experienced professionals.
Then you receive your document.
Ta dah!! As if by magic a document is produced which gives you everything you asked for. For example, a report or grant application with a breakdown of your market, who your potential customers are, and the value of the national and international markets. It’s very impressive (and probably very expensive), it has the information that the Board and Investors are asking for.
Now what? The work that you have commissioned is completed. But this market is new to you, so how do you know that the information that you have is correct, or even relevant? A one-off fee has paid for a one-off product.
Like any product you buy, a one size fits all approach is not always ideal. You have the document requested, and the Board and Investors are happy (possibly), but is that it? Where is the value?
If you win a tender or funding, then return on investment is straightforward, but could you be getting more out of this?
As a small consultancy, our customers work with highly experienced business professional, to deliver a service bespoke to their needs. You may have noticed that I said our customers work – for us to work in isolation without customer input means that we run the risk of producing generic information which does not reflect the true ethos and innovative nature of our customers, their products and services.
We work with innovators, business owners and academics, who may be reticent about bringing others into their business who might advise a change of direction, or even disagree with some assumptions. All of our associates run their own businesses – so we understand and recognise this, but we also understand the value of money hard earned, and that every piece of work should retain and expand on that value.
We believe that we should always leave a customer better equipped to improve sales and profitability by our actions. A report should not just provide information, but also inform the reader. The relevance and importance of information is explained and referenced, not just from literature, but from direct experience from within the market. You work with company directors who will retain regular contact, and ensure that you gain relevant knowledge and insight, not just a document.
So to quote Nanny McPhee
“There is something you should understand about the way I work. When you need me but do not want me, then I must stay. When you want me but no longer need me, then I have to go. It’s rather sad, really, but there it is.”