Strategy consulting has long been one of the oldest and most lucrative fields within consulting. However, pure strategy firms are becoming increasingly uncommon as many major consulting companies also provide management consultancy services.
Strategists offer strategic consulting services to assist their clients in solving problems in their businesses, by examining existing practices and making suggestions to enhance them.
An excellent strategy consultant can offer advice on a wide variety of business issues, such as improving efficiency, cutting costs and increasing revenue. They may also identify and suggest improvements for workflow management.
Companies often hire independent consultants in order to obtain an unbiased outside perspective on complex matters that they might lack the in-house knowledge for, such as sales and marketing strategy advice or product market combination strategies. Furthermore, budgeting advice is provided as well as support during mergers or acquisitions.
Strategic consulting requires an in-depth knowledge of business subjects. At minimum, a bachelor’s degree is necessary; many firms prefer candidates with an MBA. Experience and keen attention to detail are both invaluable qualities in strategic consulting work; working well under pressure is equally essential as is meeting strict deadlines. Newcomers to this field can gain expertise through other consulting or advisory roles, before going full time as strategy consultants.
Strategy consulting requires extensive research, innovative problem-solving skills and out-of-the-box thinking. Furthermore, strategy consultants must possess excellent written communication skills as they are expected to present their findings during meetings with clients.
Take this example: A company wants to transition its business model from print to online, and require a strategy consultant in order to gather data regarding internet usage, advertising revenue and IT infrastructure in order to determine whether such a switch would be feasible.
Skilled strategy consultants can also assist in solving other key issues, like whether their website’s ad revenue will offset losses from reduced subscriptions. Furthermore, their objective advice can provide relief that board members or executives cannot. Hence why many businesses turn to strategy consultants.
Education and Training Requirements
An undergraduate degree in business analytics or management is the minimum qualification to enter the strategy consulting profession; however, most consulting firms prefer candidates with MBAs and advanced degrees as candidates for consulting roles.
Strategy consultants require exceptional problem-solving and analytical abilities, along with the ability to work well with people from diverse backgrounds. Furthermore, they must meet tight deadlines while adhering to tight specifications.
Strategy consultants need to be comfortable making challenging decisions, which requires experience. Many strategists begin their careers as business analysts or project managers before transitioning into strategy consulting roles – thus giving them time to hone their craft before changing companies or switching roles altogether as their careers advance. Over time, strategy consultants may take on greater responsibilities or lead projects themselves, expanding their earning potential further as their professional credentials increase their marketability and credibility. Professional certifications may also help.
Strategy consulting requires processing vast amounts of data and providing structural solutions for business problems, which requires outstanding analytical abilities as well as knowledge of both business concepts and practices to deliver successful outcomes for clients.
Communication is another integral component of the job, from conducting interviews and engaging with consumers to presenting findings and recommendations to clients. Being able to tailor your communication approach according to whomever is speaking can increase your odds of thriving in this industry and being promoted within it.
Flexibility is also vital in this role, since many strategic goals require meeting tight deadlines with time-sensitive solutions. Being able to prioritise, segregate and organize your work schedule and deliverables accordingly is of utmost importance. Furthermore, clients may request meetings be rescheduled last minute, which requires swift responses if they make new requests on the spot – this helps maintain workflow while meeting client obligations on schedule.