The Trusted Advisors to Small Businesses


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What is the status of the relationships Professional Services have with their small business clients?
Not very strong according a new report by Business Week (The August 2007 Small Business Confidence Study).
One half of small businesses say that their most trusted business advisor is a colleague or friend. No single professional services group does very well. Even in aggregate they don’t rate as highly as colleagues and friends.
Apparently, small businesses see and use CPA/Accountants, Lawyers, Consultants and Bankers for the tasks they take care, not for the value in the relationship.
At first I was a little shocked. But then I thought about my own “relationships” with these professionals. I don’t seek any of them out for business advice beyond the task at hand. Why would I, none have made an effort to established the requisite trust and credibility. Yet, all have tried to sell me additional services or products.
Then I look at the open dialog going on through Social Media and communities of interest. Professional services, like many businesses, are losing influence with there customers and, without influence they are commodities.

John Todor
John I. Todor, Ph.D. is the Managing Partner of the MindShift Innovation, a firm that helps executives confront the volatility and complexity of the marketplace. We engage executives in a process that tackles two critical challenges: envisioning new possibilities for creating and delivering value to customers and, fostering employee engagement in the innovation and alignment of business practices to deliver on the new possibilities. Follow me on Twitter @johntodor


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