How An International Management Consulting Firm Can Be An Indispensable Business Partner

Entrepreneurs and owners of small businesses typically rely on their own knowledge and resources in managing their businesses. Generally, their major concerns evolve around how they can get a return on their investments in the quickest and most efficient means possible. Yet, no matter how competent they are as business managers – they are able to meet deadlines, complete projects on time, and handle their staff well – they may still not be successful in realizing the highest potentials of their businesses. Usually, small business owners and entrepreneurs do not see the value of an intervention from a global business strategy consulting firm. Most of these businesses do not invest in these international management consulting companies because they simply do not realize the need and the value of such an intervention.

Actually, intervention from global business strategy consulting firms can result in greater opportunities for their businesses. These firms are generally more knowledgeable and familiar with the various aspects of running different kinds of businesses. Thus, they are able to see the bigger picture, allowing them to give business owners sound advice and lucrative options. When you invest in international management consulting, you will be provided with the basics on improving your company. Furthermore, they will be able to pinpoint the weaknesses or loopholes of your company. This will allow them to consult with you about the different areas that you should focus on to improve your business.

An investment with a global business strategy consulting firm will open up your business to strategy consulting, investment advisory, venture promotion, and customized investing platforms, among others. These types of support provided by international management consulting will better equip you and your business in keeping at par with your competitors. More importantly, these may help your business thrive and prosper in markets which may be extremely competitive and demanding at times. Investing in international management consulting will gain you a competent and reliable business partner, who can work with you towards a common goal for the improvement and success of your business.

Investment advisory, in particular, has been proven to significantly helpful in aiding small companies through business development and expansion. Global business strategy consulting firms offer such assistance to allow small businesses that have a niche to thrive and prosper against bigger companies. With investment advisory, international management consulting will provide you with options for market entry strategies and business development and negotiation options. They will advise you on how to formulate tactics that meet your company’s short-term and long-term objectives. Furthermore, they also provide risk analysis and crisis management – two very helpful platforms which can, in the critical situations, actually save your business.

Indeed, an investment in a global business strategy consulting firm can do wonders for the improvement of your small business. Not only will you be able to keep breast with the latest trends, strategies, and tactics in marketing, sales, and the other vital aspects of business, but you will also gain a partner who can give you sound advice and feed back whenever necessary. International management consulting could be your business’ ticket to success and longevity.

How to Lose Money on Your Property Investments – And How Not To!

Property investing is a fun and profitable investment method. Owning real estate can fast track your wealth, but it really pays to keep on top of your real estate interests and make sure that you understand what is happening in the market.

Following a recent discussion with several real estate agents I found out recently that I had been losing over $5000 per year. One of my properties should have been renting out for approximately $100 per week more than it was. That’s a big amount of money that should have been in my bank account!

When we invest in property we usually entrust our business asset to the hands of a property manager. In many instances this property manager is a fine professional doing their best to ensure your rent gets paid and your property is looked after. But not all property managers are investors or understand the business of investing so it is your responsibility to take on this role. After all, who is more interested in the return of your investments than you?

Here are a few tips for making sure you don’t lose money unwittingly:

* Know the value of your properties – keep an eye on the market.
* Know the rental market value of your properties – once again, keep an eye on the market yourself.
* Regularly re-assess these values and review dates and keep them documented for easy reference.
* Communicate with your manager regularly and find out from them what things they believe you can do with your property to increase it’s value and the rental yield.
* Ask for a periodic property valuation and rental appraisal from your manager – I would suggest at least 6 monthly.

If you find out your property manager isn’t the expert you wish they were then make sure you are or change managers. Remember that the person most interested in your property investment success is you!

8 Must-Knows About Acquiring or Investing in a Business in China

China is not just the World Factory, most booming market for resources and consumer goods and the fastest growing economy in the world with an average GDP of over 10% in the past decade, it is also an attractive destination for foreign investment since China opened its door to foreign businesses in 1978. With China’s access to WTO in 2000, less restriction on foreign investment, new infrastructure, supply of abundant quality and cheap labour, there are good opportunities to invest in a quality business or acquire businesses in China.

Acquiring or investing in an existing business is a way to quickly establish your own presence in China and leverage its facilities, resources and networks to access the Chinese market or conduct low-cost manufacturing in China and then export to the global market. With the global financial crisis, China presents a great opportunity for Australian companies to acquire export-oriented manufacturers especially in East China and South China. However, it is usually a complicated and exhausting process.

Here are some Must- knows you need to be aware of before take your first move to acquire or invest in a business in China:

- Take a strategic approach to acquire or invest in a business in China. Review your internal resources, corporate strategy and business strategy, and identify needs and gaps so as to better assess the option to acquire or invest in a business in China. You may start by reflecting such questions: what is the ultimate goal to do so? How does this acquisition/investment serve my long term business strategy? Is there any alternative? What resources can I allocate to this acquisition and investment? What attributes do I need from the acquisition target.

- When search for acquisition or investment target, bear in mind you are looking for the best fit rather than the cheapest or biggest. How does the target fit in your overall business strategy and China strategy? Do you have a criteria list of must-have and ideal attributes of acquisition/investment target?

- Do your research and search carefully among a large pool of acquisition/investment targets. When foreign companies enter China, they are often amazed by the “low price” they are paying to acquire a business without much comparison with other potential targets.

- Conduct comprehensive due diligence on your acquisition/investment target. The due diligence is much more than just financial auditing. You need to fully understand the target from tip to toe: industry reputation, business scope restricted in their business licence and industry licence, ownership of their venue and facilities, financial aspects, manufacturing capabilities, current ownership and corporate structure, marketing and sales capabilities, corporate culture, team, relationship with local government, supplier and client references, patents and trademarks, legal issues, default history, market scandals and brand crisis, etc. You may leverage a consulting firm to assist.

- Have a competent Chinese negotiator in your acquisition team who can understand all the cultural nuances and negotiation tricks of your Chinese target. Bear in mind: not any Chinese can do this job as not any Australian can negotiate a good deal in Australia. Find competent and experienced ones.

- Understand compliance and governance issues and smartly structure the deal and the organization. China restricts foreign investment in some industry sectors in term of maximum percentage of shareholding, especially financial sector, media and some critical resources sectors. Also these is restriction on the number of directors and normal practice on the appointment of Chairman and Managing Director.

- Do not under-estimate the complexity of the bureaucratic procedures and timeframe. As a foreign investor, you may have full proof of your qualification and financial capabilities and then go through Chinese government agencies to get all documents chopped. It will be more cost effective and efficient to appoint an experienced agent who knows where to knock at the door and get things done in China.

- Develop a profit repatriation mechanism and an exit strategy. You invest in China not to lock your money in China and be there forever. Think about the end from the very beginning. As Chinese saying says ” without thinking on a long term basis, you will always have immediate trouble”.

For more tips and information on doing business with China, visit Sara Cheng’s blog: