Abstract

 

This Study Project is entitled: “Examining the success factors required in managing a sustainable one-man consulting business in the telecoms sector”. This research explored the success factors required in managinga sustainable one-man consulting business operating within the telecommunications sector. With the proliferation of consulting services across the globe and where demand for communications and technology in the ICT sector isever changing the way business is done, the focus was to identify success factors to successfully operate a one-man consulting businessin anindustry dominated by well-established consulting companies.The telecommunications industry makes for a particularly good focus area for this study due to the nature of frequent evolving technologies and new business models that this industry requires to keep up with the pace of change.

The consulting industry dates back as far as the early 1900’s but started to gain significance in the 1980’s when the industry experienced high growth due to a demand for this type of service. It became a very lucrative career option during the 1990’s and more professionals gained entry into this market in high numbers. During 2000 to 2002 the industry came under pressure due to the global economic downturn that was affected by terrorism threats, globalisationand recessionary pressures where it today has become a mature industry. Judging from the evolution of this industry today it is evident that the structure and makeuphave changed dramatically where professionals have gained entry by starting their own consulting business specialising in all forms of segments that require expert services to small, medium and large corporate industries.

An important objective of this study was to determine the key success factors to operate a consulting business run by an individual within the telecommunication industry. To achieve this primary objective a qualitative, investigative research approach was taken through individual exploratory interviews. These interviews were conducted on individuals who currently operate as sole proprietors in the industry and was chosen randomly through personal contacts and referrals by influential members in the industry.

Through the global recessionary phase in the early 2000’s and the industry business cycle that has changed over the last decade it has become clear that businesses have become less content with high fees and generic business models that are not meaningful to its own business as a value add. A gap started to emerge for small consulting firms to play a more prominent role in offering specialised services that are more tailored to client specific needs whichare more flexible, offer better value for money and are more specialised in their field of practice……………..

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