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Ipa Business ConsultantsTerrible experience

The IPA system is unethical! I spent $2k on a laptop, flight tickets, etc..., to go to IPA training for a week. They said the Biz Analyst (BA) does not sale anything. The BA sales consulting services. They BA will ask biz owner questions that nobody would know, just so the BA can gain credibility and make the owner feel stupid. The BA calls the research staff in front of the owner, but there is no research staff. The BA is calling the boss and talking to the boss as one that would talk to a subordinate, so the BA looks as though he/she has power. IPA hires anybody to be a BA. You do not need a financial background to work for IPA. There were people there with little to no financial statement analysis experience. 80% of the new employees quit in 6 months. The job burns them out with long hours, like 5am-10pm. They only pay .30 cents on the mile for your car or a rent-a-car that you use. They say that this .30 cents will workout, but I doubt it. They will also say that they have a 99% satisfaction rate. They will tell you the Better Business Bureau (BBB) complaints divided by number of client's serviced equals 1%. This is not how you measure satisfaction. It should be calculated by the number of complaining phone calls to IPA divided by number of client's serviced. I would guess this is 50%. I never asked. Many dissatisfied biz owners will not bother to call the BBB. So if you are considering working with or for IPA-IBA, I would reconsider.

Responses

  • Jo
    Jonnyapplesead Jan 07, 2015

    I am not sure how this whole process works, but I will ask lots of questions when they call tomorrow for my interview.

    My thought is that when you're going into business their are risks (LLC, franchise, etc.). Not limited, but all or nothing. When GR generates a lead for the "salesman" or Senior Analyst, the person(s) in business are in dire need of help and probably the last thing they want to do is talk about it to some random telemarketer. I would be appalled that they would call me stating my business is in the dumps and you need my/our help. Especially over the phone and after reading the reviews. I'd say put me on the do-not-call-list and hang up. It would be insulting. Does this mean they don't need it or it hit home?

    In fear of loosing everything, and/or being dependent on another person to assist, they're not going to be happy at all (in most cases). Now the SA is to squeeze every dime from them to consult (AKA GET YOUR PAYCHECK)? Is it worth it? That is for the business owner to decide and for you to ask in effort to take their money and re-invest it into a plan of action for their business (consulting). Their is no doubt this type of service comes in all shapes and sizes, and the continuum of customers are very happy to completely pissed off. Duh! Not to mention, it comes with a heavy price tag, no guarantee, and they will have to WANT TO MAKE THE CHANGE(S).

    The thought alone of loosing my business is horrifying, but the risks you take to get to start or continue (capital, competition, process needs, growth, etc.) are sometimes just as horrifying (more money to invest in assets, equipment, technology, products, promotions, better services, employees, etc). If you jumped to soon or didn't think before making decisions, and are no facing personal and financial risks, when saying "yes" to a telemarketer for help, that is in my opinion, just as irrational as jumping the gun. I would not personally, and think the owner's rational thoughts are not being used "at one's best" when making this call. When frightened, pressured, scared tactics, etc., are used they may in fact need though. Maybe walking into their firm in person would be a better approach, but maybe not. My point being, reorganization is not pretty. Either way, I feel the clients are irrational when they agree to have a SA come to your office the next day (aka..being phone forced with a immediate assistance with a large expenses and no assurance your business will succeed even after the survey and implementation is complete) is purely emotional and a less of a rational decision. But, what else do they have to lose? What would they do if they were being rational? Everything. Regardless, the leads in any case will be an emotional wreck. You're the messenger and data gather, and for me, I don't believe in avoiding proper or truthful comments to someone who needs it, regardless of their emotional state and how "cold the lead is or not." I get why the PR says get back in there and sell that ###.

    I don't know, and I haven't worked here, but I would assume being their is such a high turnover, that I'm missing something (maybe the 4 week not commissioned or loose everything tactic so they get paid and you don't, no start up funds, reimbursement, etc.). That is a jacket up, but I've not heard of anyone here on threads working at GR long enough to get commission (at least a year), and not make money, or being left out to dry after a sale or leaving. I did read one post where a gentleman was awaiting it, which would suck if your leaving, but it's kind of like using your sick days before you turn in your two weeks. Leaving always suck and the employer holds the cards. You have a lot to loose with commission base only (based on their leads) to a point, and are treated like ### apparently by not closing, but your job is to get the struggling client to commit to providing your services (AKA your paycheck).

    Only time will tell!

    0 Votes
  • Jo
    jonnydoplar Sep 27, 2013

    Wow, I was just about to accept the offer to attend training and join the Global Resources team until I read these reports. What is confusing is that [redacted]s now list them as a business you can trust because they have committed to some client satisfacion agreement with RR. I'm glad I went a little further than RR in my research.

    0 Votes
  • Ro
    Robert Murray III Aug 09, 2013

    After engaging in several in-depth conversations with a recruiter/IPA employee who had contacted me telephonic ally, I committed to attending that firm's training session and subsequent employment to assist small and medium size businesses who were in dire need of upgrading or rescuing their operational capacities. Arriving on the February1, 2009, I was whisked to a hotel outside of Chicago and provided with a very large binder which included training agenda, schedule, materials and exercises for completion. As a retired military officer with significant experience in the Army's revolutionary Organizational Effectiveness Course and recent, relevant managerial consulting experience in both the medical service and higher educational settings, I looked forward to this opportunity. However, very early on in the training it became apparent that what had been described to me by the recruiter and what the job entailed were too completely different things. The master trainer...a female...made no attempt to disguise her ad vocation of high pressure, "scare tactics" in dealing with perspective clients. Her training lectures were interspersed with unsolicited commentary about her own sad past and how those experiences...both personal and professional... appeared to justify her "approach" as a Business analyst. After four days, I realized that the disconnect between legitimate business practice and intrusive, virtually unethical assessments would only result in follow on implementations of dubious if not counterproductive implementations and evaluations by the consultants that would follow should the client commit to additional services. I departed Chicago and never was ...as promised reimbursed for the price of my airline ticket...which in retrospect was far less damaging than the insight I gained into IPA and its advertised versus actual mission.

    0 Votes
  • Mi
    Michael Lowe Feb 01, 2013

    Do not do buisness with these guys. Go out hire a good CPA and Tax Lawyer and get the same thing for about 20% of IPA IPT ABS GPS SMS or whatever they call themselves today. Total scam. Buyer beware. Google search International Profits Accociates and the negetive are about 100 to 1. Doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure it out!!!

    0 Votes
  • Ji
    jimski Jul 31, 2012

    went in for an interview conducted by a very creepy man, knew immediately it was bs telemarketing gig, did not attend the group training on Monday morning. they called me every five or ten minutes all day. legit company would have just said your loss pal and given the next guy who wanted it more a job. these people are weird and aggressive and allegedly have staff dedicated to rebutting negative comments about them online, which doesn't surprise me given the staggering volume of such feedback. thanks

    0 Votes
  • Al
    almostasuckered Feb 15, 2012
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    You all have saved me a lot of pain. I was going to take a position with them until i read this.

    0 Votes
  • Hello:
    Most of the complaints with IPA(now changed to Global Resources) are resonating with my experience. Most of the SBA are made to leave to grab the commissions they generated. I was hired as SBA after a training program that was practically free. They told us that the average income of a SBA was $147, 000, which is a lie. Immediately after graduation, I was sent to three most ordinary clients only to find that none of them agreed to get Business Analysis done by GR!!! Then, the SSD(my boss) blamed me for not getting a GO!!!The travel expenses have not beed paid yet in full!!! Then, the supervisors started behaving in a strange way blaming everything and every one for their fault. I need my two weeks to be paid.

    Dr. Asoke

    0 Votes
  • Hc
    HC Customer Oct 17, 2011

    Huntington Copper is NOT part of IPA. They worked with our company after IPA had damn near ruined us. Thank God they called us. IPA had pushed us so close to bankruptcy that my husband was on the verge of a heart attack. They were understanding. They did NOT push us. They encouraged us to research them before we signed. They gave us references. Because of our experience, I did the research and called the references and all checked out. We moved forward and I truly believe they saved our business.

    0 Votes
  • Tu
    TucsonJenn Oct 05, 2011

    We were contacted by Huntington Copper, a consulting firm out of Mason OH...can anyone confirm or deny that this company is affiliated with IPA or any of it's affiliates? It sounds like exactly the same however they claim to not be affiliated and have condemned IPA and it's affiliates in a meeting we had with them...of course they would!!

    0 Votes
  • Ju
    just dont Sep 16, 2011

    Hey curious... DON'T !!! it is one BIG scam !

    0 Votes
  • Cu
    CURIOUSINAZ Aug 24, 2011

    Wow this is the power of GOOGLE ... I got the same letter in my email for a "position" sounded good .. until i started reading page after page after page of this . Is there anyone out there that actual works for the company still or did work for the company that can explain more to me ????

    0 Votes
  • Fo
    Former SBA Aug 21, 2011

    I was contacted by a company called ABS in early 2010 and determined that there was something wrong in the interview process and did not proceed. I was then contacted by ROI a few months later and again something did not seem right. I did some research and learned about IPA and their alphabet soup of affiliated companies (ROI, ABS, GPS, etc). At this point I am inclined to pass and move on to another opportunity. One of the recruiters Brian (geniune ### both over phone and in person) entices me to come to training and pay for my travel and at this point I decide to find out for myself and so I go to training. The training is actually fairly comprehensive and was run by a pretty savy professional so I begin to think that perhaps I pre-judged the situation. Training goes on for almost 6 days and I have met some 37 or so other people who are able professionals seeking real work in a very difficult economy. We complete training and we are dispersed accross the country by the following Saturday/Sunday to our appointments. About 10 of us exchange contact information to keep up with each other as we begin work. We meet the owner and he tells us the he is an Obama man and thinks Obama is doing a great job. To those many of us who have the most business experience this is the icing on the cake. Obama and his team NO NOTHING ABOUT HOW TO IMPROVE THE ECONOMY-this is evidenced by no progress in 30 months on the job-Team Obama has just made things worse. Strikes me that it is good for IPA prospecting to have as many poor performing businesses out there as possible so in this regard I understand the corporate benefit of having Team Obama destroying the private economy. So supporting Obama is bad for the country BUT GOOD FOR BUSINESS. The great majority of our first appointments are NOT real appointments but reflective of a system that takes a maybe for a Yes and takes a No as a maybe. Prospects generally DO NOT want to see us and know little to nothing about the almost $1000 fee the we are collect after a day or so. As we begin the routine and call back to the HO for "research" our Boss berates us for not getting a yes. In my case the customer, who was insolvent and in great need of help, beleived in me but overnight researched ROI/IPA etc and told me the next morning that he was not going to sign anything with my firm that day. My boss hangs up on me and does not take my calls; then has receptionist inform me to "head to airport" where they will keep you "circling" until they figure out where to send you next. I resigned after 3 days after my boss elected to not engage me on my concerns. I was shocked to actually receive my expense check for $700 after I turned this in on time. By four weeks after the training concluded I know all ten of us had resigned and I am quite certain the the survivors were less than 5 out of 38. The need for these services in the marketplace is there for an honest company to provide these services. This group IS NOT THE ANSWER. THEY HAVE DRANK THEIR OWN KOOL AID FOR A LONG PERIOD OF TIME and so now their perspective is so distorted that they little perspective as to how corrupt they have become. To perspective employees and customers - HAVE NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS COMPANY. IT WILL COST YOU DEARLY.

    0 Votes
  • Jm
    [email protected] Jul 17, 2011

    @sest --- I am a former IPA customer - satisfied customer that is - and found their service to be very effective at helping me discover and implement best practices from both the operational and sales sides of my business. I paid out 30k over two weeks with a team of consultants in the offices the first week and a single consultant in for the second. I believe the ROI was about 90 days and from their our net income sharply increased. I believe this is due to the fact we new what we wanted to get out of the process before the consultants ever entered the room therefore we were able to quickly focus in on and drill deep down into the methods in question. The point is that the synergy between the client and consultant are irrelevant if their meetings do not result in a practical tactical approach to the clients needs, not the needs of the consultants. As consultants your expected to be able to recognize the clients needs and convey those needs back to the home office so a plan can be put together to help the client. If your a consultant who is not passing along information to the home office sufficient enough to for them to draft a plan suitable for obtaining your clients goals, shame on you your in the wrong business. As I understand it IPA, George S. May, The March Group and all the others have a very similar model which is predicated on team work and relies in great part on you the consultant having the business experience, know how and instincts to recognize the clients needs. As a client if your ongoing cash flow is not capable of supporting a team of highly focused executives in your office working together to develop a strategy to improve your companies prospects, which is why you have invited them to be there in the first place, then this approach is not for you. The teams must be compensated and your business must be capable of supporting the tasks otherwise whats the point!. I would say that the process is expensive but if you are lucky enough to have a good consulting team and are focused enough to understand what it is you hope to garnish from them then it is impossible for you to exit from this process without fully benefiting from it. To put it simply these teams arrive at your doorstep with one goal in mind. To develop a business plan focused on resolving an issue that has been highlighted in the initial consultations. It is presumed the teams will need a few days to identify the operational aspects of the area they are focusing on and then will need some additional time to render opinions and ultimately a game plan to move forward. If you get to this point with them and have the game plan in hand, follow it to the letter and I am certain you will be rewarded for your efforts and theirs. I would recommend you do this. Have the team develop a 3 year and 5 year BP for you. This BP will immediate highlight any lost opportunities or efficiency issues within your organization and will outline a plan to effect change regarding them. The BP will also act as a road map for future operational standards and sales initiatives. At year two I would employ another consulting firm (not the same one) to review your progress determine whether or not your your on task to meet the objectives outlined in the plan and to revise the 3 and 5 year targets. This time around the plan will be more focused on growth initiatives as it is assumed the initial plan rooted out any inefficiencies. With this approach you will constantly have a current and effective 3 and 5 year business plan on hand. Comments contained herein conceived and written by John McClain. IPA, George S. May and The March Group satisfied customer.

    0 Votes
  • Th
    ThankYouIPAanJohnBurgess! May 21, 2011

    In 2005 I went through the training at IPA and found it to be a very rewarding experience. I went out into the field and went on 8 business analysis appointments of which 4 agreed to consulting services. Unfortunately I had a car wreck and some health issues while on an assignment. I was fired by my manager at the corporate office and as has been stated I was not paid most of my commission because I was in that 4 week window. The expense stipend is not enough to cover expenses as was promised. But even with all of that said you would think I would have hated my experience at IPA but it was the best learning experience I have ever had from any source. Yes! They are high pressure and Yes! They push their people hard! But if a business owner is mired in the pain of being overwhelmed by their business in order to help them they must realize their condition. I had 6 of my 8 visits with businesses include my findings report being accompanied by tears and anger. They realized that they were headed to Bankruptcy court and their families would be ruined. 4 of them choose to take the positive step of letting the IPA consultants come in to their businesses. Two business owners after crying (One tried to through me out after I gave him an ad I tore out for a bankruptcy attorney) decided they would try it on their own. After I was fired and recovered I had the opportunity to be in PA where both were located and they both were out of business so they were not able to correct there bad management. Of the four that accepted services I know one is still in business in Michigan and has opened 2 more stores so IPA must not have hurt. One called me after seeing me speak in my current business and said he thought I was great after (Even though I was more than likely one of the few people to make this architect cry and admit he was not perfect) my visit but the consultants did a fair job but were not as good as he hoped for at the start of the project. He did pay a total of $55, 000 to IPA. He hired my firm to advise his clients on security planning in regards to disaster relief. The other two I do not know what happen to them. But business is tough and some people can't make the corrections themselves and IPA fills that need. Even though they might be aggressive and have problems they do help some. I wonder it seems many people on here are like myself and have been fired or had IPA maybe take money out of services they wanted to bill the IPA client for but the client choose IPA. But it is understandable if you are not up to the job and they make you realize your own failures a person gets upset and blames the messenger. I wish IPA had not fired me I loved the job but I can never repay them for the tools they gave me. Since leaving IPA I have partnered with Intelligence and Counter Intelligence former officers to form a security and threat assessment business that caters to helping companies put together disaster plans to keep operations going in disasters, Corporate security, threat assessment, DOD contracting, IT security issues and other things that help medium to large companies be ready to act to anything that may try to hurt their revenue stream. I could not have done this without the training I received from my trainers and John Burgess. I still remember a short conversation I had with him and his advice I use to this day. Business owners that hire IPA and then complain maybe they just can't accept the changes necessary to make their businesses survive. Complaints about their collections activities are just plain dumb. If a business signs the paper work that is very clear then stops paying for worked performed they need to be aggressively pursued up to the constraints under the law. You may scoff at IPA saying many complaints are from people that owe money and laugh that off but what if someone owed you money would you just write it off and bend over? If so lend me some money and I am sure John Burgess might take a loan to if you start making them. Many times I have thought about contacting IPA and offering to partner with them to offer our services to businesses for disaster planning, security analysis or other services businesses need to ensure their survival in a disaster or terrorist attack. Because I would not be ashamed of their representatives selling our services because how else do businesses know about the platforms that are out there for businesses unless they go market it. Someone mentioned sending businesses to the SBA well that would be great but a business that is about to hit a wall does not have time or the mental ability to wait weeks for SBA to offer help one hour at a time. So give IPA a break and lay off John Burgess for his problems in life like being disbarred or lawsuits. Because we all make mistakes you might not be surprised to learn I was disbarred from the practice of law. I made mistakes we all have but if a person is out there fighting for success we all might make a few. The government does I hold a security clearance so even the government looks at the whole person. I have always found I learn more from people that have lived a real life and made mistakes than from a person that has never lived. The same is true in Business. Sorry for this rant but I just happen to come up on this web site while flying back from Iraq and it got me thinking what I owe IPA for the success I have had since being fired. Instead of hating and dumping on IPA for trying to help small businesses why don't all the downers go out and help small to medium size businesses. If you can't then maybe that is why you left IPA and just shut up! If you would like to get pissed at me email me at [email protected]

    0 Votes
  • Ex
    EX IPA COM Apr 25, 2011

    You should check out http://www.exipa.com

    The site is trying to pull together current and former customers/employees of IPA and associated companies at 1250 Barclay Blvd.
    A neutral place to discuss and share opinions about John Burgess, Dave Danzig and others from the companies (ISI, GPS, ROI, etc.).

    Take a look and let us know what else should be added ?

    0 Votes
  • Sm
    sms-na.con, IPA-IBA, GPS Feb 01, 2011

    Now you need to watch out for SMS. They are one in the same and Jeff Slywka is the "Senior Hiring Director" with Tammy Slywka is in charge of "Outside Sale Recruiting". Almost got conned into joining them in Chicago as well. Thank god I found this site by doing a google search for Jeff Slywka.

    0 Votes
  • Do
    dodger532 Jan 19, 2011

    In reading all the above posts I feel that I am reliving my experience with I P A. In short I was left with them holding a bunch of post dated checks which I was told they would not cash if I called them before Friday ande told them not to deposit the check. In every case they deposided the check anyway and had an excuse for doing so, like you need to call by thursday or something else . I had to stop payment on about $24, 000 worth of checks in order to not loose my company. IPA is now using all the tricks in the book to get me to pay. I know that IPA is not responsible for the economic collapse of late but that is still no excuse for their shoddy business practices. I believe that they are high pressure and very dishonorable in their business practices. If IPA does what they have threatened me with it will bankrupt my company and it has been made clear to me they could care less.
    Those of you who have hired them for "consulting services" have (in my opinion been) very kind in your comments. Reality is they are much worse and less caring about t he businesses they serve than you have expressed. I know that my experience is my responsibility. I made an uninformed and hasty decision to use IPA. I hope I can save some one the headache and stress I have experienced with IPA. Please feel free to ask me any questions that you feel are important.
    Another unhappy and dissatisfied client.

    0 Votes
  • Bu
    Buyerbeware. Oct 27, 2010

    Beware: ROI, ROI-na, roi-na.com, GPS, ABS are all names of the same consulting company. These fictitious names are designed to guise the fact that actually they are all of the same company, same unscrupulous management and employees. These companies are all but the continuation of a company called IPA which after many complaints and lawsuits saw some revenues decline and decided to change its name and open a new business to lure in unsuspected clients.

    The Original company, called IPA or International Profits Associates, tarnished its name by scamming business owners out of their money by tying them up to a signed contract and delivering very poor business advice. The Scam works in a way that leaves the business owner bind to a contract by purchasing a consulting team that will supposedly help him identify problems which have negative impact on profitability and turn those lost profits into earnings. However, all the business owner gets in return are boiler-plate reports, charts and graphs and sometimes advice which are next to worthless and most of the times impossible to implement (or are just wrong for the particular business).

    When The business owner realizes he just spent an enormous amount of money for the consulting, he/ she is left to be blamed for not using the advice given, not following the directions, being uncooperative, and not implementing and listening to the “consultants”. The business is left with a worthless report and a huge bill.
    Please do your homework. It takes few searches to realize who you are dealing with. (INC magazine wrote a long article on their business practices).

    I hope this helped,

    Concerned business owner.

    0 Votes
  • An
    Annoyed_CPA_Consultant Sep 02, 2010

    My client hired IPA before I met them in 2002. The billed him $27, 000 and did not delivery anything useful. I have prepared the company tax returns, done a QuickBooks conversion, hired a full time bookkeeper; acted as an outside Controller / CFO for the last eight years, arranged financing, aided with many important business decisions (I am a CPA/CMA with many years experience). Much to my dismay, he hired IPA again in 2008. They put the pressure on. He signed. I found out after IPA had come out. I did some research on the internet, found all the above to be true and worse. I met the "consultant". Found he could throw buzz words around but did not have relevant or client specific recommendations. Boiler plate generic stuff could have come out of my 1970s text book. The things he suggested would not work and could not be implemented in a company and industry of my client's. Specific example: I worked as a Controller for twenty years in rapidly growing, undercapitalized businesses. I know cash flow analysis. The report he suggested the bookkeeper/office manager (I hired) prepare would take so much time to prepare; the bookkeeper would not get the other tasks done that are keeping the company going. The first day he researched how much cash the company had and available borrowing on the credit cards. He consumed all that, and even got post dated checks for additional monies. My client did not contact me although I have worked many hours the last eight years to produce very real and tangible positive results. When the cash ran out, so did the "consultant", work unfinished. My client insisted he had a guarantee of increased profit of three times cost. The client produces the contract which I read... "no warranties expressed or implied". My client was dumbfounded. He cancelled the checks. The bank has a policy that a stop order is effective for six months. After the six months, IPA presented some checks for payment, which the bank honored (the bookkeeper was aware of the stop payment limit - but failed to execute). The client did another stop payment order on the remaining checks, closed the account. IPA has been harassing my client by various means on a very regular basis ever since. At one point recently, IPA suggested a 50% payment for the balance. He has gotten three "Final Notices". Today, September 2, 2010 he came to my office to pick up the IPA file and go to a newly hired attorney to deal with IPA. Bottom line: he paid $100, 000 to get nothing, is being constantly hassled for another $10, 000+. His daughter is going to college; he has no money to assist her. He is dire shape to lose his business, his business building and land, and his personal residence. His business is his job. It will wipe him out after nearly 30 years hard work. He is embarrassed and apologetic to me. The combination of pressure, "guarantee", promise the moon proved too much for him. Again, believe the negatives you read about IPA. They are true.

    GARM: you are made up or a newbie and naive.

    Run, don't walk. They will bend you over, and they are experts.
    .

    0 Votes
  • Ja
    Jay Rippedoff Aug 24, 2010

    http://pennystocknewsletter.info/investing/huntington-copper-hcmm-top-rated-small-business-consulting-firm-changes-ownership

    0 Votes
  • Ja
    Jay Rippedoff Jul 12, 2010

    More HCMM IPA hijinks:
    http://whocallsme.com/Phone-Number.aspx/9167242643

    1 Votes
  • Bu
    busaf4 May 06, 2010

    IPA Business Consultants advance themselves as specialized consultants promising a pay back in cost savings in two to three years. Basically they have a swarm of sales people descend to sell canned programs discussed as individualized consulting. They promise lifetime support but in reality when you stop paying for each new consulting contract they are constantly trying to sell you, they disappear. Our company spent tens of thousands dollars to help upgrade our antiquated accounting system. In the end I had to discard all of it because they just did not understand our business operation and would not work. After 5 months of working every night for 5 months (with a very pissed off wife) I implemented a Quick Books system on my own that finally worked accurately and provided timely results needed to. Their magic solution to cash flow was to buy everything on credit card (another several thousand dollar consulting fee for such magnificent advice) .Their tax minimizing consulting contract (another several thousand dollars was to set up a group of various corporations to move money around. But to implement here plan they no wanted another consulting contract and another contract for them to provide the legal work. Of course, if the tax authorities challenged such moves, they could get more legal fees. At this point I had enough. By using an excel sheet and their numbers for savings, there was no payback. The basic tax planning books available at Barnes and Noble (cost under $50.00) gave me far more knowledge than the thousands spent with IPA tax planning. If you have a retirement plan, they want to charge for another consulting contract to evaluate your finances and then they want you to hand over the investment decisions for even more fees. Schwab or Fidelity will give you the same evaluation for free and their investment fees are far lower. I do take responsibility for being naive enough to originally believe there line of puff and not doing a thorough and independent investigation before contracting their services. Most of what they offer can be obtained from SCORE for little or no charge. If you ever consider hiring any business consulting firm, thoroughly investigate and use several independent sources. Or better yet use the sources I listed above. I have a learned a very expensive life lesson and risked my company’s future with these clowns.

    0 Votes
  • Cl
    clear_conscience_101 May 04, 2010

    I worked with IBA (IPA ) for almost 4 weeks .I attended the training in chicago and nothing they promised was true . Very little support . The only time s.o. is willig to anwer your call or listen to you is if you are in front of a victim . No protected territory, better yet no quality contol over the leads that you get.My BC was a clueless jerk ..My Regional magager an ssssssss hole .. . Not happy ?go get your own leads ! They even have a name for it : hybriding ! Lots of favoritism ...that's how you get the inside sales . Funny thing is, any complaint you can come up with, they've heard it before ... Are they willing to do anything about it ? Not really . .. Huge employee turnover although they claim they can solve this specific problem to the client .How ironic !

    why did I work with them to start with ? 91% commision !!! think of the money you can make if you get one victim a day . An average survey is about US 1, 000.00...That's at least 5K per week ...you do the math . Question remain: with so much money to be made, why do people walk away ?...

    Very simple ... Remember this is an emotional sale, you do not want the client to think ! why ? because there is no value delivered .we scam the client ! ... Unless you can live with that on your conscience, better move on . My last client I could have sold .I almost closed him ... but was uncomfortable calling my senex especially since, with all the previous sales that I made, none of the clients were impressed with the so called value that the analyst delivered ...As he was about to sign, I advised him to sleep on it ...this is when I knew ...it was time for me to move on .

    0 Votes
  • Em
    Email Anabelle Apr 07, 2010
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    ALL FORMER EMPLOYEES PLEASE CONTACT FOR A PIECE TO RUN ON YOUTUBE. Email us at [email protected]

    0 Votes
  • Ih
    IhateChicago Mar 25, 2010

    Avoid working for this outfit at any & all cost! Beyond pathetic. 100% commission (this is the part that won't feed ANY family). I attended the 1 week of training in Buffalo Grove because I had the time to scope it out. No quality leads and nobody knows what the @#$% we were trying to sell, nor is it any sort of household name. Given that, WAY too much time hitting the road vs. landing clients. Besides, theyre from Chicago, Obongo's hometown where corruption is king.
    -Pat

    0 Votes
  • Jo
    John Crammer Mar 23, 2010

    I worked for this company for a few months. Simply put they make a lot of money deceiving business owners. You can manipulate the software that is used to create spreadsheets to give the business owner the impression they are on the verge of BK. My PM was a total punk. You make a call from the business owners office so the PM can coach you through difficult situations. I "sold" a guy on IPA's services and he told me the only way he could pay was to get a loan on his truck. He was flat broke. My PM told me to just get the money and they would take care of the rest. Next day I went back into this guy's business and I thought he was going to clobber me. He was furious. His daughter pulled up IPA which is now called ROI, and found numerous complaints. He told me " You were going to have me get a loan on the last thing I owned to make a buck". It was at that point I knew I needed to quit working for this company. To be a consultant is one thing. But to bascially lie to people on a software program is another. I did very well my first couple months. Traveled a lot. Got a lot of "Go's". But in the end my conscience got the better of me and I walked away.

    Business owners: read books on accounting, sales, marketing. It isn't that hard. Set a course and make your path. You didn't start your business to fail. Go slow, make sound decisions. You will never have to hire IPA or George May. Both companies are run by crooks.

    0 Votes
  • Lo
    Lord Nelson Mar 10, 2010

    I completed training and am in the second week of my first assignment as an SBC (senior business consultant). The customer - the business owner - is using us for his 3rd time (2001, 2009, and now 2010), and he is happy with each experience. This is no bull ###. I am here alone, working my tail off to improve his company using all of the knowledge and skill that I can muster. It really is like the movie "Up In the Air."

    I am an MBA with 11 years of work experience, several times as a general manager. Do I like the $27-$30 per hour pay rate (when you divide it out)? No, of course not. But hey, that was told to me upfront, and it was my choice. So far, their pay is my only complaint. As for expenses, in training they tell us to keep our own copies of rental car and hotel expenses in the event of miscommunication or resubmittal. And after your first 4-weeks, you are paid on a bi-weekly schedule.

    I know for certain that my efforts with this company will greatly enhance their sales, sales management, and marketing. The $45, 000 that this owner will pay will be GREATLY overshadowed by the benefits derived from my reorganization of their sales division and their accounts receivable practices.

    And think about the other, top-shelf consulting firms, like Bain & Co, Accenture, Cap Gem, and the like. Do you think that their fees are lower? Do you think their 20-something consultants offer something that is not "boiler plated" from MBA textbooks? Of course not. Their fees are higher, yet their creativity and experience is less than ours. You can't get them to return your calls if you are a small-to-mid sized company. So, I say stand up for the small business consultants! We'll whip you into shape :)

    0 Votes
  • Ra
    Rabashocka Feb 26, 2010

    Though there are good consultants with IPA and clients that do benefit, their sales operation is deceitful and unethical. As a consultant, I went on four straight opening consults where the potential client did not have the resources nor cash flow no matter how you twist it. IPA definitely has ways to twist the cash flow to make it seem that the bill can be paid. On two of the above referenced appointments, the salesmen who had been in the business on the previous two days had not left the paperwork signed by the potential client. Three of the four potential clients did not understand that they were paying $300 per consultant per hour. Two of the four ask us to leave right away. Both received bills for that first day. One bill was for over $8, 000 for three of us and he received no services. I have not proof on this but my understanding is that IPA is rather aggressive chasing up their moneys.

    On each of the above four, I was assigned to do practically nothing other than put together a cash flow chart which was used to determine where money could come from to pay for the consulting. The cash flow did have the side benefit for the potential client(I say potential because the first day and half there is really a sales cycle not a consulting cycle no matter how IPA twists it) of getting them to face the facts about their business.

    0 Votes
  • Ke
    Ken99 Feb 23, 2010

    To COO:

    As a former COO, how do you feel about making around $30 (9% to 10% of the hourly fee charged for your services) and fronting for a months time your business expenses?

    As a business owner, I had a hard time justifying this especially when you deduct a significant amount of travel time.

    0 Votes
  • Be
    Belinda K. Jan 27, 2010

    To: COO

    Thank you for that very rational comment. I have just been reading all these postings and you are right, I guess they do lack balance.

    I was just with them recently for a couple of weeks also. The training and then a week in the field. I completed two surveys. I was also not comfortable with the high pressure and deceitful sales practices they engage in. However the reason I didn't return to the field was out of pocket expenses. The whole expense reimbursement policy was totally misrepresented to me and having been out of work for some time I didn't have the cash flow to go back the next week and be fronting hundreds and hundreds of dollars for hotels and car rentals, let alone having to take a loss of a couple hundred a week for the car rentals.

    I submitted my expense claim when I told the SSD that I couldn't continue, which was last Monday. He never had the courtesy to respond to my email and I have not received any reimbursement from their payroll dept.

    Perhaps you can tell me: as far as you know, will they honor their agreement and reimburse me for the air ticket to Chicago, the mileage on the rental cars and the per diem, or am I holding my breath for nothing? Perhaps you have a contact name for me in the payroll department?

    Any feedback you can give me would be appreciated. Best of luck to you in your career with them; unfortunately it wasn't a good fit for me.

    0 Votes
  • Bc
    bc489020 Jan 27, 2010

    I worked many years as a telemarketer (we called them business coordinators) for IPA-IBA. I sat in John Burgess's office (the owner) and spoke with him on a personal basis. I have attended their year end gala celebration (in Chicago, not Vegas)...a celebration of success, many times. IPA employees some of the most dedicated, talented, and ethical bcs, field reps, analysts and consultants in the business. They AGGRESIVELY market their services and by doing so have grown to become the leader in management consulting services for small to medium sized companies in the US and Canada. I was regarded as a top performer and so worked with other top performers within the company. It takes work. It's not easy. IPA has helped thousands of small businesses. Many businesses use IPA on several occasions...but! No company is perfect. To my knowledge, IPA makes no such claim. Due to a series of illnesses I no longer work with /for IPA but before you say no to them entirely, judge for yourself. Don't be manipulated by an overly aggressive sales rep. Don't agree to that which makes you feel uncomfortable. Simply ask yourself what your biggest challenges are in the business and if you know how to fix them. If you don't, you MAY benefit from a third party helping you. It's up to you. Good luck.

    0 Votes
  • Co
    COO Jan 26, 2010

    I spent my career in turnarounds in corporations and small/entrepreneurial companies. I joined IPA to get away from the B.S. & politics inherent in organizations. I've been in a number of surveys, and can tell you experience is no different than that of when I was hired as an employee, other than a focus on getting the owner to confront the reality of their situation promptly. As far as the work product and price of the services go, it's a lot less expensive to purchase the tools - if you are committed to using them - than it is to hire a manager or executive and contend with the extended period of time it typically takes for that person to come up to speed, hire/fire to develop the tools, and then to continue to drive the improvement.

    Several of my surveys involved returning to prior client locations. As a former COO and VP of operations, supply chain, and a former treasurer and controller, I looked at the tools implemented by IPA. The tools are not unlike those I have personally implemented in the different situations I have been in. As far as the clientele go? They are all over the map; some need a tune-up, some are doing well, and many need major or reconstructive surgery.

    If you go to any company message board - try Yahoo finance, and look up a company - you will find many complaints. I not suggesting, by this comment, that there aren't some legitimate complaints against IPA, but on the other hand, the company has been in 150, 000+ businesses, and has been around 19 years. If they were that bad, they would have failed. Not only that, blanket characterization of an entire company? Unjust, ridiculous. One need look no further than the mirror in their home to find failure, inconsistency, and counterintuitive and incongruent behaviors and outcomes. I'm not blindly "IPA all the way", but I am realistic about the situation. If there wasn't a market or need for what is offered, then their wouldn't be three-to-five major players in this space, and a whole host of smaller, regional firms - basically doing the same thing.

    Businesses I have surveyed include partnerships where it was clear malfeasance was present; businesses where precipitous sales declines have occurred and owners had their head in the sand ignoring the need to act; fundamental communication breakdowns where small companies were functioning in "silos" and addressing key issues figuring prominently in the future prospects of the business to survive, and others too numerous to mention.

    My frame of reference is based in a career of pre-bankruptcy or bankruptcy-avoidance turnarounds - a point long after a company like IPA or one of its competitors should have been called in. I have seen owners liquidate assets, families fall apart, divorces, attorneys, collapse and execution of cross-collateralization agreements and catastrophic consenquences resultant from inaction.

    My point? Balance is lacking in this thread of communication. Those folks that were contacted by IPA or attended training sent their resumes in, and attended the training on their own initiative. Business owners have to agree to a survey. Both groups are capable of saying "no", or hanging up the phone. As for Burgess? Never met him, never knew about his past until it was brought up in the IPA training. Take a look at the pedigrees of our political leaders, and he looks like a boy scout. Take a look at some of your family members, and he looks pretty human. As a former COO, if you had any idea of what goes on in boardrooms, or the deals executives make to attain bonus and stock option awards, or the high risk decisions many small- up to and including very-large businesses make regarding taxes, OSHA, EPA, and other statutory and regulatory matters, I think you'd see it a little different, and without all the drama.

    The fact of the matter is, many businesses are in denial, and the survey reveals information that has value, and the tools, if IPA is engaged, are those business not only do use, but should use.

    0 Votes
  • Lo
    LookingForIPAInfoAgain Nov 04, 2009

    I AM LOOKING FOR IPA INFO

    I AM LOOKING FOR IPA INFO.

    First, there should be some simple way to log into this site, but what it is I don't know. So I am not even sure what my name will be this time.

    As explained above, I stayed for one week of training and left after one week in the field. I communicated with others in my training group, and I believe it is safe to say the consensus, very quickly, was many of the very negative comments are probably accurate. I did not want to inflict pain on business owners seemingly, charging a lot and giving them very little, therefore, I bailed very quickly. I believe, although I have not yet confirmed it, that many or most of our training group has or or will also quit.

    Unfortunately, the concept of, and the need for what the IPA is selling appears to be great. That they don't deliver, and seemingly, don't really care, is sad.

    0 Votes
  • Al
    AlmostscammedbyIPA Nov 03, 2009

    A question for "Looking for IPAInfo": do you still work there?

    0 Votes
  • Mj
    MJTA Oct 27, 2009

    Every comment aabout IPA are correct. I worked for them for two weeks as an analyst (one week training + one week on the field). In one week I travelled to 4 different cities and almost kicked out of all clients...what a depressing experience. There is no doubt that they cross the line to being shady. Here some high lights of their ruthlessness:

    1) All anaysists are supposed to contact only their survey director and they will beat you to death unless you get a contract. No emails, all contacts are over the phone only.
    2) You are sitting in an airport waiting for the call from IPA to find out where you are going tomorrow (Ir could be FL or WA). You will have to stay in Super6 Motels to minimize out of pocekt expenses. Remeber the sales person told the client the day before, "we just happen to have an anlyst in the area...it is your lucky time."
    3) The survey directors, are totally ruthless and they will treat you like an elementary school kids
    4) Now about the poor clients - No matter how good they are you are supposed to convince they will go out of business in a short time and make them feel horrible.
    5) Out of the 20 or so from our batch of trainees, the trainer said, only 2 will survive more than two months!!
    6) Names of people who worl their are secret and they will not let you talk to anyone!!

    STTAY AWAY FROM IPA...CLIENTS, ANALYSTS OR CONSULTANTS...MJ

    0 Votes
  • No
    Not so naive Oct 26, 2009

    These bozos tried to work their way into our office last week. 2 visits and 7 phone calls later I felt like I should have provided lubricant. I never signed anything, gave any information, or even acted like I had even remote interest in their services.
    I find it really interesting that they just HAD to know if the business made at least $800, 000.00. Obviously I told him it was none of his business what we made. Don't get pushed into answering ANY questions from these guys. Their questions are designed to trick you into revealing information about your company. Rude doesn't even begin to cover it with these guys. Today I think I really pissed the guy off when I told him I'd have to be dead for him to set foot in these doors. But I did tell him good luck with his business...

    If you work for these clowns I hope you can respect yourself in the morning. With what this country is currently going through, to think that there's a company out there like this is incredible. Do us all a favor and set yourselves on fire. You'll keep the rest of us warm when we can't afford our heating bill due to your crap.

    0 Votes
  • Ra
    Rabashock Oct 20, 2009

    I worked as a Senior Business Consultant for a couple of months. I have many years of experience as a successful consultant and know what it takes. IPA has some quite capable people. Some I met during training did not come off so capable. Likely their consulting does have positive effects on a certain number of clients. I believe that. But the sales tactics taken with potential clients are so reprehensible that I couldn't stay with the company after going out to a few clients. The one that turned my stomach was showing up for an appointment with a Project Manager and two consultants and the business owner didn't have a copy of any other the paperwork from the Analyst (really a salesman) the day before and he had no idea that he was pay $300 per hour for each of us plus travel expenses. When he heard this, he told us to leave. The Project Manager called in to IPA's Buffalo Grove office and was instructed to leave a bill for the business owner. This bill was for close to $10, 000 for no actual work being done. True enough the business owner was an idiot for signing the contract without really understanding it. But based on what I was told by the other consultant on this job, the Analyst will lie through their teeth to set up for the team to come in the next day. Also, the company will not stop such practices because they are bringing $10's of millions per year in almost pure profit on these one day blowouts. I'm not sure why charges haven't been brought against IPA executives for such practices. Possibly, it might have to do with the donations they make to key politicians. It's definitely a fraudulent rackeet and should be shut down or, at least, the criminal element of the company found and removed and let the honest consultants work and help businesses.

    0 Votes
  • Cl
    clarkaim Oct 17, 2009

    I booked a flight to go to chicago this sunday, then I go on line and find all this. What is the straight dope, should i cancel the flight and get my money back?

    0 Votes
  • Fi
    FindingItHardToLogIn Oct 16, 2009

    If I knew how to log in I would. I am LookingForIPAInfo also.

    You appear to be a bitter man gotwise. It is the inherent negativism in too many posts on too many boards in general that make it hard for readers to assess what is written. My second post is the one just prior to yours. Actually, it sounds like you contributed to the very things you seem to find disgusting - apparently, ripping people off for a month or two and being on "Al's rotation" (which I presume is saved for high producers?). I also presume you hung around long enough to get a few checks.

    I stayed with IPA for a week of training and one week in the field. I found it all to be very informative, but in fact, am unable to recommend this company to prospective customers or employees. Unfortunately for companies in general, finding good, reasonably priced, effective consultants is very hard - and I think that helps to contribute to IPA's ability to maintain itself. I doubt everything they do is bad, but I have a feeling that what is being sold is "steak and champagne" and what is being delivered is "a warm beer and a cold hamburger". In court or elsewhere I suspect the customer at best, can only prove he or she was promised meat and a drink, and the warm beer and cold hamburger meet the definition.

    In general, I would not recommend a person becoming an employee or a customer of this company. It appears to be an ongoing high pressure company, exerting pressure on employees and customers as well. Additionally, it appears IPA's profits are considered to be so important I fear devastating a small company is considered to be preferable to "not getting the sale".

    0 Votes
  • Go
    gotwise Oct 15, 2009

    LookingForIPAInfo -- good luck to you in your endeavor with IPA. I could care less about what you think about the posts that others have contributed or in your ability to "grade" the spelling in their posts. In fact, you do sound like a perfect fit for the IPA mindless dribble and boilerplate crap that they try to sell to people. It sounds as if you have already fallen for their hype and crap. Did your instructor get the phony calls during the training session about another job that went the full hours and the huge bonus the consultant was receiving? Yes, I tried the IPA gig for a month or two and was actually on Al's rotation for a few runs. Let’s see how you feel in a month or two when you are forced into taking checks from people who simply cannot afford it, or when your “partner” some old ### who has been with ipa forever insists that you either “squeeze them for every last hour” or get sent home. Post again when you have been thrown out of several companies for being “lying thieves” or “from a company of con artists” before you even get to open your mouth. Out of my training class of 15 people, only two stayed with this company for more than 3 months—we all quit. And please don’t try the “well I guess you not a good consultant” routine as I and several others from that training class have been very successful as consultants. In fact, several of those consultants have commented that all they have to do for business is follow the ipa clowns around and walk in after they have been tossed out.

    0 Votes

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