Work Style

By Abner Cobos, Director of Operations.

When looking for a micro-niche market intelligence consulting services company, it is important to understand the difference between small and a “boutique consulting firm”. Your micro-niche vendor might be either or both. If it is both, it should be by choice rather than accident. At Control Logistico we choose to be a small, highly specialized business intelligence firm that intentionally focused on one thing… the Latin American defense and law enforcement markets.

By definition, a micro-niche consulting firm is likely to be relatively small. The micro-niche serves the specific and unique needs of a narrowly defined clientele. The firm is small intentionally because it focuses on one thing… to increase sales. Period. To this end the business advisors and managers assigned and involved in serving your account are experts at what he or she does. The comprehensive and authoritative services provided to this narrowly defined clientele are not cheap, and they never will.

An intentionally small micro-niche firm is different from larger or “traditional” consulting companies because most of these corporations work under more generic needs and wide guidelines. The larger firm it’s not narrowly focused in designing a very specific strategy to promote, ensure sales and expand operations inside a clearly defined military or law enforcement community. Their services are mostly informative (statistics) and not oriented to bring together your firm with the unique kind of end-user environment your company is aiming for, nor it’s directed to connect you with a lucrative niche market segment located in a specific geographic region. Customers are treated no differently in any other way.

A boutique, on the other hand, is by definition “a small company that offers highly specialized services or products”. A micro-niche, by this definition, qualifies as a boutique. There are, however, other defining characteristics of boutiques. Typically, boutiques offer more than a very specific product line or selections of services. The business intelligence products and consulting services are delivered in a unique atmosphere and style that caters to the particular tastes and preferences of the clientele.

The micro-niche boutique can be distinguished by the unique experience in which products and services are delivered to a narrowly defined group of clients. Other definitions of a boutique point to the true distinguishing characteristics of Control Logistico; exclusivity and customized service. Several defining features and attributes can be identified.

1. Size — Boutiques are and must be small in order to provide a superb level of attention to detail and fully customized services to their exclusive clients. Retail boutiques are like us, physically small stores with a limited product line in short supply and “hard to get” business intelligence services. Boutique consulting firms typically have about 8 to 12 active accounts — at any given time — focusing on the specific special needs and pain points of an exclusive group of clients who need these market intelligence services.

2. Uniqueness – Boutiques do not look or act like other traditional companies. We don’t operate with the business mentality of an accounting firm. We are not only bilingual. We are bicultural. Our consultants are not civilians. We all have a strong and impressive international defense background. There is intense passion on each consulting expert. We get deeply involved in our client’s sales targets, push for a full understanding of the current enterprise performance (with a top-down perspective) and align the company’s business strategy to its operational implementation… and then back again. It’s a cycle. Not a single sale.

3. Results – We specialize in discovering and capturing new business opportunities. We truly understand the risks associated to entering a new market. For managers unfamiliar with this procedure this could be a complicated and time consuming process that will always require a clear understanding of local business and military traditions, cultural behavior, endless language barriers, U.S. government regulations and foreign business practices. A mine field. Control Logistico provide leaders and decision makers with; sales distribution networks, opportunity identification, rapid penetration and the selection of local agents and distributors. These tools allow our clients to quickly get a clear picture of their business’s performance in real-time, it enables them to take action and continually improve operations and business models. All of the above in just a few months. Not years.

4. Personal attention – Everyone in a boutique firm — from receptionist to executive staff — recognizes every client on sight and their needs for results. The business needs and preferences of each boutique client are known. Our clients have a need to map, monitor and manage end-to-end business processes across multiple business units and data sources that have become increasingly critical in today’s defense industry. Are we intense? Of course we are. Everything that surrounds our client conveys that he or she is understood and valued. We understand the needs of the Latin American markets to purchase and modernize their weapon systems and tactical equipment… lawyers don’t. We know you are looking for answers, not for another report.

5. Unique staff – Successful BD boutique consulting firms are staffed with people who have a profound tactical and technical knowledge of the Latin American defense markets. It’s precisely this market knowledge the powerful tool that allows us the true commitment to provide personalized / professional services every time for every client. We believe that in order to evaluate a company’s current and future worth, the most important factors are the quality and experience of the managers. Our network of recently retired Latin American Army, Air Force, National Police and Marine officers is second to none as we are able to open the doors that no one else can. We understand the Latin American culture, the social and political environments, and above all, we understand the decision-making process and recognize the internal and external factors that play a key role in military spending.

6. Surprise benefits – By quickly connecting our clients with the right opportunities abroad most of our clients typically discover some surprise benefit when doing business with us that they did not expect. This benefit need not be exceptional or costly. It must be unexpected in some way, however.

7. Comprehensive excellence – A boutique consulting firm delivers its client the most, the best and quickly. Business is warfare. As military and business development experts, we are clearly in a position to provide the best approach to profitability, risk mitigation and competitive advantage. Finally, and because we focus on the needs and preferences of a very small and exclusive group, we are able to provide a quick entry to the Latin American markets in the most efficient and targeted way.

In closing, the difference between large consulting companies versus a small boutique consulting firm — exclusively specialized in the Central and South American region — is in the customer experience. For many clients quick, broad and generic will suffice. For others, the characteristics of the consulting services (our products and deliverables) demand an expectation for a unique and unparalleled customer experience. This is the micro-niche approach we provide to help you achieve — and optimize — the return on your exporting goals and investment.

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