CEO Advisor Newsletter March 2022
The Role of Consultants - Excerpts from The Private Equity Handbook
- As per the CEO of a Private Equity-backed Company:
- I have to say that my own personal opinion of consultants has changed dramatically over the last two decades. As a young guy, I used to joke with a bit of arrogance, "If you can't do, teach or consult."
- Since then, I have totally changed my tune. As a leader, as a CEO, I recognize that there is a time and a place to bring in consultants.
- EBITDA: Consultants represent an add back. Even though you're expensing cash, it's not a permanent expense. Consultants can be expensive, but it's a one-time cost, and if you have the cash, don't sweat it!
- Best Practices: Consultants spend a significant amount of time working with companies, and they pick up best practices. They come into an organization and impart wisdom that the company itself does not have.
- Different Views: Within a company, everyone has a job, a task list to complete, and so it's not always easy to take a step back and conduct a successful self-assessment or assess a project when the goal is to focus on serving current and existing customers. Consultants come in with a fresh set of eyes and will quickly spot what you can't.
- We bring in consultants frequently. They help us look for process bottlenecks, help redesign existing processes, and help us build a better mousetrap. In this way, we can serve existing customers and future customers more efficiently and cost effectively, increasing your EBITDA by improving margin.
- As an example, I'm working on a large redesign of the sales organization and account management in my current company. Sure, I could probably solve this problem by hiring a couple of employees and taking a few years to do a project, but the consultants can provide the capacity and completely redesign the sales process from the top to the bottom in a couple of months. At the end, I have a new comp plan, new job descriptions for the different players, and a manager's playbook that discusses metrics and the cadence that should be put in place.
- You built the business and know every aspect of it. There's not a single consultant out there who can come in and tell you how to run your business better.
- That was my attitude when I came into the world of Private Equity and running companies, but I very quickly rethought that position. The consultants aren't necessarily experts in your business, but they are experts in certain areas of running a business. I now fully embrace consultants.
- The key is to assess exactly where you are. Do you know everything? Do you have the expertise? And more importantly, do you have the bandwidth? If you do, fine. Consultants probably aren't necessary. But if there are problematic areas of the business or ones that could use improvements and you don't have the time or expertise to attack them, consultants can help. Ask for help and move forward.
- Contact Mark Hartsell, MBA, President of CEO Advisor, Inc. at (949) 629-2520, by mobile at (714) 697-3370, by email at MHartsell@CEOAdvisor.com or visit us at www.CEOAdvisor.com for more information.
Mark Hartsell, MBA, President of CEO Advisor, Inc. Joins the Credder Inc. Board of Directors
- San Francisco, CA – Mark Hartsell, MBA, President of CEO Advisor, Inc. (www.CEOAdvisor.com), a business/strategy consulting, growth capital and M&A advisory firm, has joined the Board of Directors of Credder Inc. Credder, a national leader in online content credibility, provides a comprehensive database of online article reviews and scores, and ranking information of online news articles, authors and news outlets.
- Credder targets its database of information as a recurring revenue license to online news aggregators, publishers, social media platforms, search engines, web browsers and programmatic advertisers. Credder’s software platform enables crowdsourced editorial reviews created by consumers and professional editors to hold the media industry accountable and increase trust in online news, while assisting its customers in increasing online advertising and subscription revenue.
- Credder’s software platform, API, and database of score and ranking information, is revolutionizing the media and content industry, and is addressing the Section 230 compliance - a critical issue today. Chase Palmieri, CEO states, “Mark Hartsell is a seasoned media and software executive and will bring a hands-on approach to growing Credder to the next level. With our management team’s execution and Mark’s added expertise and hands-on approach, Credder is substantially changing online news and content forever.”
- Mark Hartsell states, “Credder is the only company amassing crowdsourced online content reviews to drill down into the heart of trust and brand safety in online news. Their API continuously updates content scores, and author and news outlet ranking information to its customers. These customers benefit tremendously by, 1) focusing on the most trusted and brand safe news, 2) gaining increased advertising revenue, 3) new subscriptions and 4) an increase in subscription renewals – a winning combination for everyone.”
- About Mark Hartsell, MBA
- Mark was previously an executive at McGraw-Hill, Thomson/Reuters and other media companies and was the founder/CEO of Infocon America, a pioneering software company that was one of the first SaaS platforms to take professional publishers online over twenty years ago. Currently, Mark is the President of CEO Advisor, Inc., a growth and strategy consulting, growth capital and mergers and acquisition advisory firm to small and mid-size software, media and other industries. Visit www.CEOAdvisor.com for more information.
- About Credder Inc.
- Credder Inc. is the leading online news review platform, often referred to as the “Rotten Tomatoes for news.” Credder’s software platform enables article reviews from the public and verified journalists, and aggregates these reviews into the Credder database. Credder licenses its database as a recurring revenue data license to customers nationwide. Credder is revolutionizing online news by addressing trust in news – a critical issue for both the media industry and consumers worldwide. Visit www.Credder.com for more information.
- Contact Mark Hartsell, MBA, President of CEO Advisor, Inc., for a free initial business consultation at (949) 629-2520, by mobile phone at (714) 697-3370, by email at MHartsell@CEOAdvisor.com or visit us today at www.CEOAdvisor.com for more information.