MANAGEMENT AND BUSINESS CONSULTING
Management Consulting is one of the most dynamic and exciting industries to be in today. It is also one of the world’s oldest professions, and it’s origins can be traced back over 6000 years to the time of Moses and the exodus from Egypt.
According to scriptural records, Jethro, the priest of Midian, gave some good advise to Moses on how to manage his time and become more productive. This is possibly the first recorded example of management consulting advice, regarding time-management, delegation, assigning accountability and structuring an organisation.
The need for consultants and good consulting advice has grown considerably over the years, and has become even more important during the COVID-19 crisis. Today, the consulting industry is a multi-billion dollar business. While the industry is dominated by big consulting firms, small firms and independent self-employed consultants like myself play a very important role.
My Management Consulting Approach
By applying a holistic, systems approach to consulting based on the Balanced Scorecard framework, I help organisations develop a clear line of sight from their organisational purpose right through to their final customer.
The Balanced Scorecard developed by Robert Kaplan and David Norton provides a framework for analysing any organisation. The four perspectives of the model: Financial and Stakeholder, Customer, Internal Processes and People and Systems, view an organisation as a system. For the organisation to operate at optimal performance, all four perspectives must work together. As a result, my consulting approach addresses all four perspectives of the BSC framework.
Using value mapping at each stage of the process, we are able to identify where value is added and where it is taken away. I also use an issue-based consulting approach to identify root cause of business problems and to develop solutions that work.
My mission is to deliver sustainable results through sharing knowledge, building competency and implementing good business practice.
Management Consulting Services
Because of my thorough understanding of the whole business value chain, I am able to offer the following consulting services and products:
Strategy and Strategic Planning
- Defining organisation’s purpose or Reason for Being
- Scenario Planning
- Developing strategy using the Balanced Scorecard framework
- Strategy mapping – developing a strategy map on one page
Financial and Stakeholders Perspective
- Strategies for generating revenue
- Strategies for improving productivity (reducing costs)
- Managing cash flows, and cash flow forecasting
- Financial planning for startups: Developing Income Statement, Balance Sheet and Cash-Flow Statement
- Developing business plans
- Marketing plans
- Improving customer service
- Supply chain optimisation
- Negotiation and selling skills for customer service and sales force professionals
Internal Process Perspective
- Operations and process improvement
- Process mapping
- Continual improvement using Kaizen concepts
- Root cause analysis and problem-solving
- Issue-based consulting
- Value chain analysis, and value mapping
- Developing Key Performance Indicators (KPI)
People and Systems (Learning and Development)
- Personal Balanced Scorecard (PBSC)
- Individual Development Plans (IPD)
- Competency assessments
- Developing core and job specific competencies
- Performance Improvement
- Performance management systems
- Evaluating training effectiveness using the Kirkpatrick four-level model
- Measuring Return on Investment (ROI) of training
- Calculating and improving individual productivity
- Analysing individual behaviour using the DISC behavioural profiling system
Defining Organisational Purpose
Every organisation needs to have a clear organisational purpose statement. One that all stakeholders can understand and resonate with. An organisation must have a reason for being. I work with executives and senior management teams to identify the organisation’s real reason for being; its primary purpose. Together, we craft a meaningful purpose statement; one that will guide employee behaviour and engagement. Research has shown that employees who are motivated and engaged, are aligned with the organisation’s purpose and who believe they are doing a meaningful job.
Your organisation’s reason for being statement acts as a ‘north star’ for all everyone working in the organisation, regardless of position.
Everything flows from the Organisation Purpose statement – your vision, mission, strategy, and even the high-level design of your organisation.
Read my blog post: Your Reason For Being: Understanding Your Organisation’s Purpose
Scenario planning is a process of making assumptions on what the future is going to be and how that future may impact on your business and its environment. The objective of scenario planning is to remove as much uncertainty as possible from your decision making. Scenario planning is a very useful tool and should precede any strategic planning exercise. But, it is not normally done in small and medium companies because it is perceived to be very complex and time-consuming. Nothing could be further from the truth.
I use the Illbury-Sunter four-quadrant scenario planning model because of its simplicity and effectiveness. We start off by identifying the ‘rules of the game’ These rules are specific to each industry. Next we identify the key uncertainties your company or organisation is likely to face. Then we craft scenarios based on each key uncertainty. We will typically craft three scenarios; the best case, worst case, and most probable case. After crafting the scenarios, we analyse them and develop a number of options for each. Finally, after analysing the options, we choose the best option. In this way we move from uncertainty and absence of control through to certainty and control.
Scenario planning provides the input into the strategic planning process that follows.
Check out my blog: Future-Proof Your Business Through Scenario Planning
We live in a world of constant change where nothing can be taken for granted. If you want to be successful and to stay on top of your game, you must be prepared to learn. To be adaptable, and to take the right actions as and when necessary. Having the right strategy is an important step. This is where I can help.
I help facilitate strategy development workshops, either in-person or on-line. During these workshops we define your reason for being and organisational purpose, vision, mission and governing principles; your values.
Combining agile strategic planning methodologies with traditional strategic planning techniques, and the Balanced Scorecard strategic management system, ensures we identify meaningful strategic objectives. We link strategic objectives to four key perspectives: Stakeholders’, Customers, Internal Processes and People and Systems. This results in developing appropriate strategies for the situation.
One of the key things I focus on when facilitating strategy planning workshops is to get executive accountability for each strategic objective. No accountability will mean no action.
Using the Kaplan and Norton Balanced Scorecard strategic planning framework as a guide, we map strategic objectives to four key perspectives. Typically these perspectives are: financial, customer, internal processes, and people, but we can tailor the names to your own organisation requirements. This plan on one page is an ideal tool for communicating your strategic objectives to the people who matter the most. Your employees. They are the ones who will be doing the work of implementing your strategy. They must be aligned and engaged.
Developing strategy is one thing; implementing it is something completely different. A survey by management consulting firm Booze and Hamilton, found that 90% of companies had a formalised strategic planning process. Approximately 50% of companies had trouble implementing their strategic plans because they didn’t have a formal execution process in place. There has to be a clear focus and determination to translate strategic objectives into workable projects. Without personal accountability, nothing will happen.
Strategy is implemented through projects, and these projects must be cascaded and aligned throughout the organisation.
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org for a discussion on how I can help you with developing or reviewing your business strategy and help you future-proof your business.