Business always involves risks, and success requires vision, entrepreneurial instincts and some luck. Often, the risk taken does not provide the expected reward, and this is when you may need guidance from a expert corporate advisor. Here are some of the signs to look out for:
1. You need an outside eye
It’s your business — you know it like the back of your hand. You have seen it grow from the start-up that you nurtured to the organisation that it is today. But not every problem is visible if you’re too close to it. Think of it as being stuck in a maze, and there’s someone with a bird’s-eye view who can guide you home. And that’s what Corporate Advisors are good at. They gauge a problem from a broad perspective, which may not be possible for someone who is intricately involved with the business.
2. Your business growth is stalling
Every industry and business has its own lifecycle, from introduction through growth, maturity and finally, decline. However, there are invariably ups and downs that do not fit into this pattern. For example, the industry and business may be in the growth stage, but revenue growth may not be as fast as it should be, or is actually declining. Or perhaps the growth rate of the business does not match the industry growth rate, which means that the competition is taking market share.
3. You are losing key personnel
Employees are the most important assets a business has. But are your key employees contributing to growth? If you find that some of the personnel that have been with you since the beginning leave seeking greener pastures, it may be time to seek help. Corporate Advisors are experts not just in identifying the problem, but also in suggesting the resources to provide your business with the right solution.
4. Internal differences are stifling your business
Conflicts and internal disputes are differences between the management, the board, and employees of an organisation. While disagreements are good if multiple perspectives lead to new solutions, internal conflicts could become a drag on productivity, compromising market opportunities and revenue generation in the long run. Corporate Advisors are capable of looking at issues from a neutral perspective, understanding the sources of conflict. It takes expert guidance to create consensus and provide direction, as well as experience in conflict management.
5. Managing cash flow is a challenge
At any stage of the business life-cycle, cash flow is key. From paying your employee on time to meeting your debt repayment schedules, your operations could be thrown off track if cash flow is not managed appropriately. Corporate Advisors can look at your operations, stakeholder agreements and processes to find a solution to your cash flow problems.
6. Scope for process efficiencies
The business environment is constantly changing. This means that processes that were appropriate for your operations a few years back may need to be fine-tuned to suit a new reality. This is where the expertise of a Corporate Advisor could make a difference to your organisation. It takes a new perspective and expert analysis to understand the areas that need improvement. For example, process improvements like Six Sigma could drive productivity by eliminating inefficiencies and defects, leading to an improved bottom line.
7. Need for investigative accounting
Efficiencies in operations and processes should be accompanied with a specialised discipline called forensic or investigative accounting. Business losses could be the result of deliberate misrepresentation of numbers, which could be undermining productivity and profitability. Corporate Advisors are equipped to deal with accounting that looks beyond conventional numbers and consider the complexity of business operations, in the context of business realities. If you are concerned about your books, specialist corporate advisors would be able to identify the problem areas and recommend solutions to get you back on track.
8. Arranging for additional financing
The dip in business performance or the inability to exploit market opportunities may just be the result of insufficient finances. Sometimes, it could be just an additional injection of working capital that could turn the business around. It takes experienced Corporate Advisors to guide your organisation through the hassles of securing additional loans, by preparing and furnishing the required documents.
9. Your business needs specialised skills
Organisations cannot rest on their laurels in the face of new challenges. The new-age issues associated with evolving wicked problems and global megatrends mean that your business needs to revamp its human resources, to exploit opportunities and resolve challenges. Corporate Advisors can perform a skills gap analysis to outline your core expertise and understand your business needs, and advise your organisation on the specialised skills needed to take your business forward. When you have the right skills, your business is equipped to tackle the challenges that lie ahead.
10. Do you need to restructure to reinvent your business?
A thorough investigation of your current business affairs may reveal the need for a revamp. Restructuring is a complex initiative that takes expert advice from specialists. Corporate Advisors would be able to provide this, and oversee the exhaustive process.