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Who is a consultant?
A consultant is a professional who sells his expertise in a specific area (or areas) to clients, providing them with assessments on their practices, helping them identify problems and solutions, and advising them on possible courses of action

Management Consultancy
Management consultancy is the provision to management of objective advice and assistance relating to the strategy, structure, management and operations of an organization in pursuit of its long-term purposes and objectives. Such assistance may include the identification of options with recommendations; the provision of an additional resource and/or the implementation of solutions.

Pioneers in Consultancy
The first management consulting firm was Arthur D. Little, founded in the late 1890s by the MIT professor of the same name. Arthur D. Little originally specialized in technical research. but later became a general management consultancy. The first pure management and strategy consulting company was McKinsey & Company, still considered a leader in the field. McKinsey was founded in Chicago during 1926 by James O. McKinsey

Qualities needed in a consultant

Skills in writing reports Skills in structuring task Technical knowledge Industry experience Communication skills Political skills Presentation skills Willingness to take risks The ability to create a support system and make things recover if anything goes wrong Ability to tolerate insecurity Desire to learn continuously

Commitment to both work and people Business understanding; Change management skills; Ownership, management and delivery of solutions to clients; Project delivery and risk management; Excellent interpersonal skills; Ability to transfer skills to others; Creative and analytical thinking; and Adherence to a code of conduct and ethical guidelines

CAs as Management Consultants

According to ICAI The expression "Management Consultancy and other Services" shall not include the function of Statutory or periodical audit, Tax (both direct taxes and indirect taxes) representation or advice concerning tax matters or Acting as liquidator, trustee, executor, administrator, arbitrator or receiver,

It shall include the following

Financial management planning and financial policy determination. Capital structure planning and advice regarding raising finance. Working capital management. Preparing project reports and feasibility studies. Preparing cash budget, cash flow statements, profitability statements, statements of sources and application of funds etc. Budgeting including capital budgets and revenue budgets. Inventory management, material handling and storage

Market research and demand studies. Price-fixation and other management decision making. Management accounting systems, cost control and value analysis. Control methods and management information and reporting. Personnel recruitment and selection. Setting up executive incentive plans, wage incentive plans etc. Management and operational audits. Valuation of shares and business and advice regarding amalgamation, merger and acquisition. Business Policy, corporate planning, organization development, growth and diversification.

Organization structure and behavior, development of human resources including design and conduct of training programmes, work study, job-description, job evaluation and evaluation of work loads. Systems analysis and design, and computer related services including selection of hardware and development of software in all areas of services which can otherwise be rendered by a chartered accountant in practice and also to carry out any other professional services relating to EDP. Investment counselling in respect of securities [as defined in the Securities Contracts (Regulation) Act, 1956 and other financial instruments.] (In doing so, the relevant provisions of the Code of Ethics must be kept in mind). Acting as registrar to an issue and for transfer of shares/ other securities. (In doing so, the relevant provisions of the Code of Ethics must be kept in mind)


Quality audit. Environment Audit. Energy Audit Acting as Recovery Consultant in the Banking Sector. Insurance Financial Advisory services under the Insurance Regulatory Development Authority Act, 1999 including Insurance Brokerage. Acting as advisor or consultant to an issue, including such matters as:Drafting of prospectus and memorandum containing salient features of prospectus. Drafting and filing of listing agreement and completing formalities with Stock Exchanges, Registrar of Companies and SEBI.


b. Preparation of publicity budget, advice regarding arrangements for selection of ad-media, centers for holding conferences of brokers, investors, etc., Bankers to issue, collection centers, brokers to issue, (underwriters and the underwriting arrangement, Distribution of publicity and issue material including application form, prospectus and brochure and deciding on the quantum of issue material (In doing so, the relevant provisions of the Code of Ethics must be kept in mind). c. Advice regarding selection of various agencies connected with issue, namely Registrars to Issue, printers and advertising agencies. d. Advice on the post issue activities, e.g., follow up steps which include listing of instruments and dispatch of certificates and refunds, with the various agencies connected with the work.

How to start?


Decide and Plan

The legal structure of the consulting firmproprietorship, partnership etc _ Office with the requisite infrastructure including whether home based or a separate office. Computer with internet usage Support staff A business plan that will help keep the consultancy afloat and profitable, marketing and making known the expertise available and managing finances A back up plan if certain things go wrong The budget within which to operate.

Market the Consultancy

Scan consultancy opportunities advertised in newspapers and government publications; Register with business directories and government resource lists; Contact agencies, contract officers, human resources personnel, and large consulting firms who are known to receive consulting contracts; Network with others and develop a wide range of contacts who are willing to refer clients to you. Keep in touch personally;


Join professional and trade associations to meet others in your particular area of expertise and to exchange information about your business Develop your own Web site; Send specialized mailings to executives who have recently moved into new positions, either within their present organizations or in new companies; Write and send news releases or articles of interest to prospective clients. Develop the skill of Public speaking. Make use of Referrals


The Learning Process.

Subscribe to newspapers, magazines, newsletters, and periodicals including Economic Times, Financial Express Access the Internet, bulletin boards, and databases; Join associations, seek leadership positions, offer to make presentations; Attend conferences, tradeshows, seminars, and courses. Undertake a market research and analysis Watch TV business channels -CNBC

Contract /Proposal
Consulting contracts may vary widely in their format and their length, depending on the nature and the complexity of the project. A written contract helps to avoid misunderstandings, to outline the terms of payment and to protect you in case of disagreements with your client on the nature of the assignment. A disclaimer clause, if put into the contract would absolve the consultant of happenings /things beyond his control.

A few standard articles may be included in written contracts: The name and the location of the parties involved, The date the contract is signed, An offer, an acceptance of the offer, Consideration (i.e. the benefit accruing to the parties), Signatures of the parties, etc.


Value for services

Many factors influence the worth of your services. When setting your fees, take into consideration the following: 1. The amount that can be taken as a token advance 2. Market rate 3. Rarity of the knowledge and extent of specialization required 4. Cost plus factor 5. Pre-determined rates in case of certain defined projects

Some Consulting maxims


Give the customer a warm fuzzy feeling. Trust is your best job security. Diversify instead of holding on to limited clients Be exceptionally easy to find. The clients would feel more comfortable if you can be contacted at any time easily Discuss problems faced during the course of your work with the client frequently, as otherwise clients hate unhappy surprises when compared to timely bad news. Deal in good faith. Have a good mechanism to deal with housekeeping and paper work. Cultivate the skill of communication as it is a huge asset

Conduct yourself properly and accumulate a list of customers who will speak well about you. Your references are your reputation in the consulting world. Make a full disclosure of data, source code, passwords etc as it is well acknowledged that clients are comforted by consultants who dont act entitled to their engagements. The best way to make money is to make money for your clients. Learn how to read your client Your clients are buying your judgment, not just the time. Your long-term clients are your best customers

Learn to manage both your time and project effectively. Education is the best investment a consultant can make. Keep yourself updated always. If you have a reputation to steal clients, you will never be trusted by other professionals. Be known for your Integrity.


Management consultancy Institutes

India- US - UK