Anyone working for or engaging with Management Consultancies know that they seldom practice what they get paid to preach or reach the performance level promises that they motivate their clients to pay them consultancy fees on achieving.
This situation has been further intensified by the new era of restrictions on face-to-face interactions and extensive travel brought on by the latest pandemic. Therefore, body shopping enabled by rudimentary technologies such as Excel PowerPoint and survey tools are no longer viable.
Organisations must focus on these 6 success factors
1. Watch out for management consultancy echo chambers!
Gaining a true and accurate picture of the current business situation is mission critical in any performance improvement initiative and requires all stakeholders to be fully interviewed and their responses assessed and reviewed for quality, understanding and consensus. Management consultancies are not able to do this in a scalable and quality way and resort to involving a more manageable subset of stakeholders that are often from a homogenous group such as sharing the same preconceptions or political alliances and this results in hearing back what they want to hear and is what we term the management consultancy echo chamber.
2. Insist on a garbage in, garbage out filter!
Advanced algorithms are needed to monitor feedback and response behaviour to surface inputs that were either none considered, overly repetitive or contradictory so that they can be further validated but management consultancies do this on an ad hoc and subjective basis that lacks scalability and consistency.
3. Base any actions on understanding and consensus
People do not know what they do not know so it is critical to surface and resolve understanding issues and gaps and then build and measure consensus in a fully scalable and measurable way. This is yet another critical aspect of permeance management that management consultancies cannot do and is yet another key reason for poor results.
4. Don’t pay anyone to just describe the water while you are drowning
At a basic level, executive and leadership teams need to know:
- What their organisation needs to do to achieve certain business outcomes
- In what order of business priority they need to do things in
- How they need to do things
- What the expected lead time to benefit is
- How to continuously measure all of the above
Don’t pay management consultants and let them walk away with the money just on delivering a description of the problem and challenges. Anyone can do that!
5. Don’t be suckered into buying a predetermined solution!
Often management consultancy is just an elaborate sales approach to sell predetermined solutions such a specific technology, training packages, recruitment services, outsourcing etc. Ensure that any solution recommendations can be justified by creating the performance capabilities that were identified as weak or missing and to further show how this can be tracked and evidenced over time.
6. Reduce and share risk
One of the key management consultancy approaches is to get clients financially and timewise committed to an engagement before any promised results are delivered. Like spin-doctors on steroids they will compel and convince as this is where their true skills lay. Then, once the deal is signed and most of the money is paid and time spent, it is easier to get clients to compromise on those promised results. They know that having your name associated to a poor project is political suicide so there is always a compromise that can be done!
The future for Management Consultants
There is a dramatic convergence happening between advisory, training, development and consultancy verticals that is being further driven by our CapametriX platform. These professional service organisations need to focus on great content creation in a usable form factor and value add services to fine tune and interpret results. Our technology has fully automated the 6 key factors above to they are now on notice to deliver a more credible offering.
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