Top Business Strategy Consulting Firms

Charles asks…

Would this be a good mix for Strategy Consulting?

I am currently an undergraduate transferring to the University of Florida. At the college I am receiving my associates degree, my focus was on finance which is to what I applied for to UF. I was accepted. After some significant changes in my life I want to change my major to something that is more challenging and stands out compared to finance. I want to switch my major to Industrial Engineering (IE). This major is perfect for me because it is very quantitative and it focuses on business aspects.

The dilemma is that I might not be able to transfer to IE because of the lateness in my undergraduate career. Alright so here are my two options I am considering:
1. I make the switch to IE, stay at UF about one year longer more or less and of course graduate Magna Cu m Laude, (or else it is pointless, not to be conceded but I am smart). Then I would receive some experience in the field followed by appling to Boston Consulting Group (my target firm). Or just apply straight to BCG.

2. This option I would finish my degree in finance at UF. Then I would receive a masters degree in IE from a top notch school. Then apply straight to BCG.

Basically which option sounds better? I’m on the fence leaning more towards two because it sounds better on paper etc.

By the way I intentionally placed a space between Cu and m because Yahoo replaces it with stars because of its explicit meaning in other contexts.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

BSG is perhaps the most prestigious Consulting Group in the world. They get thousands of applicants,
What make you think they won’t just toss your application at first glance?

Few reputable schools will allow you to take a Master’s in Industrial Engineering without an undergraduate in Engineering or at least a year of bridging course. You would be more likely to get into a Master’s in Technology Management (MSTM).

James asks…

I want to be a Management consultant at a management Consulting Firm and then go on to my own company?

I want to be a Management consultant at a management Consulting Firm and then go on to my own company?
I would like to double major in Business Administration, and International Business and then get a job as a Management Consultant. I would also like to one day open my own Strategy/Management Consulting Firm and then spread Internationally. Does it really matter what four year college I attend? How much can I expect to make in this job?

And please dont come at me with the “it shouldnt matter what you make” line because that just isnt how the world goes round ok… Be realistic. I care about what kind of life I’m going to live financially so I can care less about your feelings on how much you should love your career even if you dont make alot of money. Id rather not live in a one bedroom apartment… Thanks in advance for any information on this job. Hey can someone also provide me with a website that shows this career in detail….? Thanks…

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

You ask some good questions, and your goals are not unrealistic. Now, I would have to say that it will be very hard to expand your company internationally, but it is not impossible. What I would do instead is this:

If you want to double major, I would major in business administration and Communication Studies or Public Relations. Most universities lump PR in with business, but the reality is that it is completely different. I say this because, as a business major, you will take courses in global business and international studies. Most colleges have international professors teaching courses here to offer the intercultural perspective of business. They know that in today’s age that international relations is a necessity.

Communication will open up the doors to PR and marketing, which is a hot commodity for a consultant, for you will be able to help a client market a product that will be beneficial to them. A Communication degree will also teach you the aspects of organizational communication, which is absolutely essential for a consultant. If the communication in an organization is off, that is when a client will outreach to make sure that their company runs smoothly, and just where the problems lie.

As far as what college you attend, I would say that it does matter. Work really hard in high school, and make sure that you have a choice of top tier schools. I would suggest University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill, Harvard Business, Princeton, and any other Ivy League school. If this is unattainable, do not stress where you go. I went to Longwood University in a small town in Virginia, and they have an excellent business school, and Communication Studies program. I am starting Grad School at Virginia Commonwealth University, where I am taking courses in strategic Public Relations, Organizational Communication, and Global PR. Just make sure that wherever you go for college, make sure you do well enough to graduate with a really good GPA.

I would go to any undergraduate school you choose, do really well there (join organizations that with a business background and maintain at least a 3.7 GPA), then go to the best grad school that you possibly can. This will greatly increase your chances of making your dream a reality.

Also, be aware that this is not something that you will be able to start and get the ball rolling right away. You have to network with everyone. Remember: your friends in high school and your friends in college, well, everyone you meet is a potential client. Keep in tough with those that will help you, and those that may need your service down the road.

You will also need to join a firm in this line of work first to help you build these relationships and networks that will allow you to start your own firm. I would look at McKinsey & Company at

I would also read the following books on the subject:

The McKinsey Way by Ethan Rasiel

The McKinsey Mind by Ethan Rasiel and Paul Friga

The McKinsey Engagement by Paul Friga.

McKinsey is the most popular PR firm in the world. They have ways of solving problems that will greatly help your career. No matter where you go after college, these books and lessons learned will greatly benefit you to realizing your goal.

As far as money, at first you will make about 50,000-60,000 with another company. You will only go up from there, if you are good. You just have to have the credentials so people believe that you are, and if you don’t make them realize it!

This is the same field of which I am seeking job opportunities. I am wanting to start my own consulting business on the side while working.

I hope that this answer will help you, anything else, just e-mail me, I will be glad to help.

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Entry Level Business Consulting Jobs

Thomas asks…

What others careers could someone with a BA in History obtain, besides a teaching position?

Where could they be found?
What would the job description be?
How much would it pay?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

I’m a college professor going for his PhD in Marketing. I have taught over 800 undergraduate students marketing and promotions over the last 4 years. I will tell you what I’ve told them:

I have a BA in History. Initially, I thought about a history teaching job on the high school or collegiate level. Then, I saw potential salaries. You don’t make much money teaching. So, I got a sales job, which led to a better sales job, which got me into a top B-School. After, I worked in management consulting before going back to school for my doctorate.

Here’s the main idea: your undergraduate degree doesn’t dictate your eventual career. Only 15% of the students in the top 15 business schools have an undergraduate business degree; most were good students in liberal arts, math, economics, and the social sciences. The one thing they ALL have in common is at least 5 years of real-world business experience.

Your liberal arts background is extremely valuable. You’ve learned how to research and write. The historical perspective is critical to effective managerial decision making to avoid repeating past mistakes. I laugh when I say this because hundreds of top corporations continue to do the same dumb things over and over again. We need more history majors in the business world!!!!!!

The first thing you need to do NOW is LEARN ABOUT BUSINESS. Read the WSJ, or Fortune Magazine. Learn about the business side of your favorite activities. Choose a favorite brand and learn its history. Once you learn the vernacular, you’ll be better equipped to apply for an entry-level job in sales, marketing, PR, advertising, investments, etc. Network with friends and family. Check an online job search engine. Starting pay varies.

Past liberal arts students of mine are currently working across the country in many different industries, and in many different jobs. It doesn’t matter where you start your career, the key is to start now! Fortune favors the Bold! Carpe Diem!Good luck.

Ken asks…

How much does a Financial Analyst make? How do I become one?

Is there a big demand for Financial analysts? How does a programmer become one?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Financial analysts gather information, assemble spreadsheets, write reports, and review all non-legal pertinent information about prospective deals. They examine the feasibility of a deal and prepare a plan of action based on financial analysis. Being an analyst requires a vigilant awareness of financial trends. Analysts have a heavy reading load, keeping abreast of news stories, market movements, and industry profiles in financial newspapers, magazines, and books. Most analyst jobs are in banking houses or for financial-advising firms, which means following corporate culture and wearing corporate dress. If a deal demands it, they must be prepared to travel anywhere for indeterminate lengths of time. Those who wish to rise in the industry should note the necessity of significant “face time,” attending social events and conferences and spending downtime with people in the profession, which can be expensive; this social circle tends to gravitate to high-priced attire and costly hobbies, habits, and diversions. Analysts sacrifice a lot of control over their personal lives during their first few years, but few other entry-level positions provide the possibility of such a large payoff come year’s end.
Many employers use bonuses, which can be equal to or double the beginning analyst’s salary, to attract and hold intelligent personnel. Successful financial analysts become senior financial analysts or associates after three to four years of hard work at some firm. Those with strong client contacts and immaculate reputations start their own financial consulting firms. Many work as analysts for about three years and then return to school or move on to other positions in banking. Financial analysts work long hours, and deadlines are strict. “When you have to get the job done, you get the job done. Period,” emphasized one. The occasional fifteen-hour day and night spent sleeping in the office is mitigated by the high degree of responsibility these analysts are given. The long hours breed a close kinship. Over 65 percent called their co-analysts extremely supportive, and many labeled them a “major reason” they were able to put up with the demanding work schedule. Most people become financial analysts because they feel it is the best way to immerse themselves in the world of finance and a great way to earn a lot of money. They’re right on both counts, but be aware that the immersion is complete and somewhat exclusive, and although people earn a lot of money, few have the free time to spend it all how they’d like to.

Paying Your Dues

Entry-level positions are highly competitive. A bachelor’s degree in any discipline is acceptable, so long as the potential analyst’s course of study demonstrates an ability to understand and work with numbers. Those with computer science, physical science, or biological science backgrounds may find the field more welcoming than do liberal arts majors. Business majors don’t necessarily have an advantage; each company trains the incoming class of financial analysts before they begin the job. To become a financial analyst you need to have a strong sense of purpose-it is not a job for those who are uncertain that their future lies in the financial world. Candidates must be able to meet and interact with clients, handle a heavy work load, prioritize and complete work under strict deadlines, work as part of a team, and work with computer spreadsheet and valuation programs. Many find the travel stimulating initially, but “after your third week in Jopbsug, Tennessee, at the ball-bearing plant, it gets old.”

Associated Careers

Those who progress along corporate financial-analyst tracks can expect to eventually find different jobs in the financial community, perhaps as investment bankers, investment advisors, or financial consultants. Those who enjoy the more interpersonal side of finance move into management consultant positions, where they can use their people skills as well as their financial skills. Over 45 percent head to business school within five years and another ten percent go to law school. A few become in-house financial advisors or officers in the industries they covered as financial analysts.

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Austin Texas Weather

Steven asks…

What are the pros and cons of living in Austin, TX?

I am considering moving to Austin, Texas for a variety of reasons, mostly around quality of life. I currently live in the San Francisco Bay Area and am experiencing the high traffic and high cost of living (price of home-ownership, electricity, gas) among other things..and am searching for a place where both are lower. I love the Bay Area weather, but have heard Austin‘s weather is comparably mild, esp in the Hill Country. And of course, the fact that there’s no state income tax is a definite plus…but it’s offset by the high property taxes.

Thanks in advance for your input!

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Austin is one of my favorite cities.
As is san francisco, but you are is outrageously expensive!
I’ve lived in houston my whole life, but i go to austin when i can.
And my cousin lived there for about 6 years and my brother lived there for a couple as well.
I hope this helps
-you are right..austin’s weather isn’t bad. Of course coming from san fran it would take getting used to. But it’s much better than houston. Winters are lovely and not bone cold but perfect. There are days when it feels really hot but most of the year you just wanna sit outside all day.
-it is such a cute city. Neat little shops and nice buildings. Its nice walking around the capitol and old buildings.
-if you are a bike rider austin is great.
-good public bus system.
-music festivals and lots of fun festivities, that are sometimes free. Exa. Austin city limits. There was a battle of puns.
-great culture
-beautiful houses
-i think cost of living is reasonable. Some parts are expensive, but there are some areas that are pretty cheap..esp. Compared to san fran
-not as touristy as san fran
-nice trees
-i could go on forever
-well i get annoyed with all the crazy UT longhorn stuff, but you can learn to avoid it.
-traffic can be bad but can also be avoided

i just love it. And i think if you like san fran you will like austin.

Maria asks…

Which is the best State to live in Texas or California?

I am moving from Ohio in 2 months and have decided to move to either Texas or California. The Sacramento area seems to be cheaper than South Cal, but I’m not sure if the weather is as nice in Sac. I here wonderful things about Austin, Texas, but I know it gets very hot there in the summer. Where In Southern California could I find a middle class area where everything is new, such as housing developments, restaurants, malls and so on? Is California really all it’s cracked up to be, or is Texas better. Thanks for your answers!

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

California is EXTREMELY expensive!

A middle class area where everything is new, such as housing developments, restaurants, malls and so on can cost you $1,000,000+ in Southern California.

Something decent (a small 2bd 1ba old house) can cost you around $600,000+.

Other parts of California it’s only slightly cheaper but STILL expensive.

And plus California is getting really ugly right now because of the economy and it’s only going to get worse. This is what these people forgot to mention.

I would move to Houston, TX. VERY BEAUTIFUL area! Lots to do. Endless amounts of fun might I add! And CHEAPER too!!

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Management Jobs In Austin Texas

Richard asks…

Where can I find a decent Finance job in Austin?

I have a bachelors degree in Finance from an accredited business school. I graduated top of my class in Finance. I also hold a bachelors degree in Business Management. I have a decent gmat score. My wife is attending Univ of Texas for a PhD. We are moving to Austin in less than a month and I will be looking for a finance job, preferably something that will help me pursue my cfa and an mba. I prefer a financial analyst position. No sales.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

There are some really good employers in Austin: Whole Foods, Dell Computer, Motorola, Freescale, AMD, and others. Try their web sites, but also,, and craigslist.

David asks…

What kind of Degree should I aim for for a profession in Fitness, Yoga, and Nutrition?

I want to be a fitness/ Yoga instructor and a nutrition expert. But I dont know what kind of degrees I should aim for or what college in Texas has the right programs for me. any advice?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Well, I’m just browsing the website, but the University of Texas Austin has a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology & Health. Kinesiology is the study of movement (like exercise). From that degree, it has specialisations you can choose from: Applied Movement Science, Exercise Science, Health Promotion , Physical Culture & Sports, Sport Management
here is the degree and then a blurb abour each of the specialisations:
University of Texas Austin also has a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training, which is related to that, and you could consider as well, it is at the bottom of that page I linked.

I’m not from Texas, but I know you guys have the University of Texas system, which is schools at a bunch of different campsuses in different cities. And University of Texas Austin is very well ranked according to the world rankings (ARWU/ Jiao Tong List), which it is ranked as #38 university in the world, so that is the obvious first choice to me if I was in your position. Usually the more reputable universities are the best in other aspects too such as providing scholarships, study abroad, location, teaching, connection with the world , link to job opportunities, etc. But consider the other University of Texas schools too, and the other public or private universities in your area.
First determine which one you like, and then go on their website and look under “Academic Programs” or “Undergraduate Degrees”, and make sure they have the program you are looking for before you get your heart set on the university.
Here’s a good list of other Texas colleges I found to help with that, it’s pretty organized:

Hope this helped! ^^

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Web Design Austin Texas

Sandra asks…

Which schools have more studio-based Masters programs in Graphic Design?

I’m looking for a Masters program in Graphic Design but am looking for a curriculum that focuses more on practice and studio than theory and research. I’d be grateful for any help!

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

VCU in richmond, but it can be hard to get in. Texas@austin should, NYU as well. There are other schools like Creative Circus, Brainco, etc, Pick up some graphic design Mags and do some research. Make sure the school has a career placement counselor.
And do Internships. Also remember the more Web ready you are, the more job ready you are.

Mary asks…

What is the pay of a quantum physicist living in Texas?

Median, experienced, and starting please.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

There are lots of physicist in Texas. Quantum mechanics is a topic not a sub discipline. Geophysicist are the most common and are employed by the oil and gas industry. Other physicist work in industrial engineering, aerospace design. There are also academic pistons, University of Texas at Austin, Texas A and M University, University of Houston all have large research physics departments that research as well as teach. The range is $0.00 if your unemployed to @$200,000 if your in the private sector developing a new technology. The US Department of Commerce has a listing of salaries for various occupations on a web site some where.

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Austin Texas Apartments

Joseph asks…

Relocating to Austin Texas apartment cost?

I am currently living in South Jersey and thinking about relocating to Austin Texas for jobs. What much do apartments go for in the Austin Texas area? What areas in Austin Texas should I stay away from when looking at apartments?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

The price varies greatly on what apartments go for. Here is a map of all apartments in Austin and you can search by price

As far as areas…its tough to be specific without knowing more. Where would you be working (traffic can be bad), what you like to do and how much you can spend? Crime isn’t especially bad anywhere in town. You can check out specific addresses here

This map can help you even if you dont have a specific address

Also, this might help with getting a job here

Good luck.

William asks…

How much would my gas/electric bill be?

I have been living in dorms for the past 2 years and have never had the responsibility of bills. I am now interested in getting my own apartment in Austin texas. Its a 1 bedroom, 1 bath. 377 square feet. I was wondering to see if anyone could give me a rough estimate of how much my gas and electric bill could be per month?
-thank you
thank you!

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Well my wife and I had an apartment like this for a long time we paid around 70-100 dollars for electric, gas never went over 30. I will admit we are both bad at leaving the tv on or having every light in the house on so it can be cheaper once you break those habits.

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Management Consulting Recruiters

Mandy asks…

What are some jobs in the legal field besides Paralegal/Legal assistant and Lawyers?

I’ve been a paralegal for 2 yrs and i like it but i feel like im getting bored with it. i want to go back to school for something “in the law field” but im just now sure yet. Can anyone help me find some careers in the legal field.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Core Legal Careers

* Lawyer (also called Attorney, Counselor, Solicitor, Barrister, Advocate)]
* Paralegal (also called Legal Assistant)
* Legal Secretary (also called Adminstrative Assistant or Legal Assistant)
Careers in Legal & Administrative Support

o Legal Assistant
o File Clerk
o Court Messenger
o Copy Center Professional
o Mailroom Clerk
o Administrative Assistant
Careers in Litigation Support

o Litigation Support Professional
o Hybrid Paralegal
o E-Discovery Professional
o Practice Support Professional
o Document Coder
o Litigation Support Analyst
o Litigation Support Specialist
o Project Manager
o Litigation Support Manager or Director
Careers in the Courtroom

o Judge
o Magistrate
o Law Clerk
o Mediator (also called Arbitrator or Conciliator)
Careers in Court Reporting

o Court Reporter (also called Stenographer)
o Broadcast Captioner
o CART Provider (Communication Access Realtime Translation)
o Webcaster
Careers in Legal Consulting

o Legal Nurse Consultant
o Trial Technology Consultant
o Jury Consultant
o Trial Consultant
o EDD Consultant
o Computer Forensics Professional
o Legal Software Consultant
o Legal Marketing Consultant
o Forensic Scientist
o Legal Videographer
o Legal Investigator
o Accident Reconstructionist
o Legal Management Consultant
o Document Management Specialist
Careers in Legal Publishing

o Legal Publisher
o Legal Writer
o Legal Editor
o Legal Web Manager
Careers in Legal Administration

o Law Firm Administrator
o Contract Administrator
o Law Firm Marketer
o Practice Administrator
Careers in the Courthouse

o Courtroom Deputy
o Court Administrator
o Court Interpreter
o Courtroom Technology Specialist
o Court Clerk
o Prothonotary
Careers in Legal Education

o Law Professor
o Law School Dean
o Law School Admissions Officer
o Legal Career Counselor
o Paralegal Instructor
o Legal Researcher
Careers in Intellectual Property

o Patent Attorney
o IP Docketing Specialist
o Patent Designer & Illustrator
o Patent Agent
o Patent Clerk
Careers in the Political System

o Attorney General
o District Attorney
o Legislator
o Legislative Aide
o Legislative Staffer
o Legal Analyst
o Lobbyist
Miscellaneous Legal Careers

o Compliance Specialist
o Conflicts Analyst
o Legal Recruiter

Ruth asks…

How to settle for an assistant’s job?

I am over-educated, over-qualified, and over-40. I can only get interviews as an admin assistant, due to age bias. How can I not resent having to take this type of job while people younger, less experienced, less mature, and less educated are getting the better jobs? It’s been several months, and the writing is on the wall. It seems to be the only type of work I can get. I need to make peace with this and move on, but it’s really hard. I still have ambition.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

An administrative assistant job is not just being a secretary. You are assisting an administrator of some kind, with the idea that if you learn the job thoroughly, you’ll know his job and be able to step into his position if needed. So there’s a career path there for you. Also, once you’re on board at that company, you can apply for other positions from the inside, and once they know you, you won’t face the discrimination problem the way an outsider might.

That said, you have said nothing about your skills or experience. Yes, age discrimination may be there, but maybe there are things you can do to find a job that suits you better. Without knowing your background, there’s no way to suggest things you may not have thought to try. Here are a few general suggestions:

1. Get yourself in LinkedIn. Just put your past jobs on there, not the current admin job. Join groups realted to the career or industry you’re looking to be in. Set up a network of former co-workers and others, and let them know you’re looking. Recruiters will eventually find you by searching LinkedIn accounts for skills like yours. Very often, age is not a factor for these recruiters and their clients.

2. Appearance can help or break you, especially when you’re over 40. You may not be able to hide your age, but you can look professional and competent, rather than dowdy and apologetic.

3. Take the admin job and keep job hunting. You’re always more attractive to employers when you’re employed. You can refer to it as a bridge job if you’re asked why you took the job.

4. If you have great skills and experience, perhaps the younger people are getting the jobs you’re trying for because you’re seen as overqualified for them. Try to apply for jobs that are a step or two up the ladder, like management positions. Or look into being a consultant. (You can be a full-time employee of a consulting firm if you don’t want to work as a temp or on an independent basis.)

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Product Marketing Consultant Salary

Carol asks…

What are some job opportunities and income with a major in international business and a minor in accounting?

Please give a description that entails what comes with the job and how much the annual average salary is. Thank you!

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Advertising, Marketing, and Public Relations Managers- Advertising, marketing, and public relations managers use market research and employ various strategies to develop, promote, and sell their clients’ products and services. According to the U.S. Labor Department, managers earned the following average yearly salaries in 2009- Advertising managers: $97,670, Marketing managers: $120,070, Public relations managers: $101,850.
Financial Analysts- Financial analysts help businesses and other organizations come up with investment strategies to meet their financial goals. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average yearly earnings of financial analysts in 2009 were $85,240.
Interpreters- Interpreters help individuals or groups communicate with each other by orally translating from one language to another. The earnings of interpreters depend on many factors, such as the languages they interpret and the type of employer they work for. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, interpreters and translators earned an estimated average yearly salary of $45,700 in 2009.
Management Consultants- Management consultants think about ways to increase a company’s profits and productivity. Their goal is to make a business more successful and competitive. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average yearly income of management consultants in 2009 was $84,650.
Stockbrokers and Financial Services Sales Agents- Stockbrokers help clients buy, sell, and trade stock. Financial services sales agents sell and arrange a wide range of banking and financial services from loans to mutual funds. Both also advise clients on setting and meeting financial goals.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average yearly earnings of securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents in 2009 were $91,390. Stockbrokers are usually paid a commission based on the amount of stocks and other investment products they sell.
Top Executives- Top executives run businesses and other organizations. Combining knowledge of the field with business skills, they attempt to lead their organizations to success. Pay in this field depends on the executive’s skills, the size of his or her company, and the type of industry. Executives often receive many perks (benefits) in addition to high salaries. For example, they can receive big bonuses if their companies perform well. Other perks may include spacious offices, plenty of office help, and the ability to travel worldwide at little or no personal cost. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the average yearly salary for chief executives was $167,280 in 2009. General and operations managers earned $110,550.

Mark asks…

What kind of career possibilities are there that involve giving financial advice?

I am interested in finance and investing, and am currently in school for business. I am unsure of what career possibilities await me after graduation though.

I was considering positions like: investment adviser, financial adviser, tax consultant, financial planner, etc

I would like to be giving advice, but not putting huge pressure on my shoulders (ie- I don’t want to physically make the decisions of how to invest others’ money)
I like researching different ways to invest that would avoid high taxes, and other ways to maximize returns

I would like to stay away from sales as much as possible, as I don’t want to sell a product I might not necessarily believe in; and sales really isn’t my thing. I hear that financial planners is really only 5% planning/researching, and 95% sales/marketing

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

I will say that degree in economics or diploma in business management would be enough for you to get a job in financial sector. Or to become a stock broker, after graduation you have to apply for a sixth month training program provided by any stock broker firm. There are many job opportunities available for financial advisor you can take job in banks, university and some MNC which give very good salary.

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Business Process Optimization Consulting

Paul asks…

how do i get consulting assignments thru internet?

I have more than 25 years of experience in corporate world and demonstrable expertise in supply chain manegement , project management and business process reengineering

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

I don’t think that the Internet is a good way to market most types of business consulting services. While you should have a web site, in most cases this is something you will direct people to using other marketing efforts rather than something that will generate business on its own.

Unless you do something that is highly specialized, chances are good that people will never find you doing a web search -there are just too many other firms out there doing the same thing. You can do website optimization, buy keywords, etc., but in my opinion, this is like trying to win the lottery.

I would suggest some “old-fashioned” marketing initiatives:

-Network with your previous contacts, including former employers and employees – if you have 25 years of experience, you should have plenty of them. This will be your best source of business.

-Join all relevant industry associations and attend their functions, including trade shows.

-Publish articles in relevant industry publications as well as local business papers in your market area.

-If you are a sole practitioner, contact the larger firms that provide the same services that you do, including some of the “Big 5″ accounting and consulting firms. Believe it or not, this can be a good source of work. Many larger firms are always looking for subcontractors and also come across opportunities that are too small for them to handle cost effectively.

Good luck with your efforts.

Daniel asks…

Best ITIL Training practice learning center, foundation in Bangalore, Bangaluru, Karnataka, India also ITSM?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Based out of Bangalore – India, ITHelpLine is a business and technology solutions provider providing quality consulting and training services in IT Service Management. Our services and offerings include ITIL training, assessments, ITIL based process design, documentation, process optimization and ITIL product implementation. We are committed to providing the best resources and solutions to our clients. Our ITIL Experts can serve and support both onsite and offsite custom training, deployment & implementation efforts with qualified resources.

ITHelpLine offers the highest quality of services. Our offerings span IT service management (ITIL V3 and ISO2000) training, consulting and business technology services. With our balanced approach encompassing People, Process, Products & Partners, ITHelpLine increases your IT operating efficiency by protecting computing environments, reducing costs, increasing reliability and improving are the links

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Small Business Consultation Services

Nancy asks…

How do you survive while starting a business.?

I opened a business two years ago and it is taking a while to grow. Personally my finances are at rock bottom. Do I qualify for any special loans or grants to help me support my family until my business takes off. I am a veteran(Marine Corps) if it helps. Please help I dont want to close shop.

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Not grants — grants are not given to struggling business owners. Otherwise, you won’t hear of small businesses closing shop because the government bails them out when the going gets tough

First, find a mentor who can give you an objective assessment of your business. At this point, you need to evaluate what’s not working with your business, and a mentor can help you look at your business with a clean fresh perspective — and more importantly, recommend how you can improve your business situation:

- is there really no market for your product/service?
- are you not managing your cashflow well?
- what are the loopholes in your marketing strategy?
- is there something you can improve with regards to your price points?
- how can you improve your distribution?

Go to your local SBDC Small Business Development Center and ask for a free consultation. They can give you mentors or consultants who can guide you.

Sharon asks…

What’s the most effective way to promote a security company?

I have a small security company and I just want to get some feedback on how to expand?

AustinBusinessConsulting answers:

Presuming that you are talking about a Security Guard/Patrol company? After my law enforcement days I owned part of a security guard and patrol company. We made up fliers, got in uniform, and went from business to business talking to owners. Going in uniform has a big impact and will get you past the clerks and direct to the business owner.

We started by looking at a geographic area where we wanted to build a patrol route. In my example we had a tourist area with lots of hotels/motels where there were lots of problems with drugs, gangs and prostitution. Our patrol guys who were out at night were our leads, we had them watch where the local cops were going on a regular basis then we’d follow up the next day to talk to the owner to show them how our service could help to reduce their problems. It worked well, we signed up lots of motels, bars and restaurants. We found that people didn’t just own one motel, so when we signed up one we would get 7.

Results were our best selling tool. Our clients each got several patrol checks per night and we started to have an impact. Problems left our motels and restaurants and went to others. Then we started getting calls from new motels as the problems moved. In some cases we got contract to not only provide patrol but to put a guard on the property. As problems left the motels they started to head for the surrounding apartments, so we started to visit apartment managers and slowly built up those clients. Like motels, apartment owners generally own more than one property. We got several contracts for property managers who had large complexes all over the county.

When a standing guard had a problem he could call for a patrol car. Clients liked seeing the cars.

Of course as time went on we were finally able to get into the phone book, not that phone books will be around much longer.

This was just one method. If you need more help I do small business consultation.

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