Business Advisor: Job Description, Requirements and Career Information

Business advisors provide financial and strategic advice to small and middle-sized companies. At minimum, a bachelor's degree is generally required for this job, but advisors must also have an excellent business sense and keen communication skills.

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Business Advisor Job Description

Whether they are independently employed or work for a larger company, advisors are called upon to support both new and established businesses. They analyze a company's business plan and financial statements to properly advise it about investments, marketing, and potential funding opportunities. Technology is now able to produce financial reports without the help of a business advisor, but it is the job of the business advisor to analyze those reports.

Requirements for Becoming a Business Advisor

Education

Business advisors are required to have a bachelor's degree in business, finance, or a comparable discipline. Many business consultants also have a Master of Business Administration (MBA) and specialize in a specific business area, such as law or marketing.

Skills

An excellent business sense is one of the most important skills required for business advisors. More than anything else, advisors must be able to tell a company how to make a profit, so they must understand the needs of consumers in order to advise companies on how to meet those needs.

Communication skills are vital, because business advisors are expected to create and maintain client relations. Because the companies being advised are often under tight deadlines, the abilities to observe these deadlines and work well under pressure are also useful skills.

Additionally, business advisors must be knowledgeable about current financial trends, which necessitates some continuing education. Attending workshops and conferences, for example, will help advisors stay abreast of new developments and generate optimal advisement.

Career Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), most management analysts earned between $44,370 and $142,580 per year as of May 2012. The BLS predicted that the employment of management analysts would grow about 22% between 2010 and 2020 (www.bls.gov).

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