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DETERMINING WHAT CONSULTING APPROACH IS RIGHT FOR YOUR ORGANIZATION
A wise man once said, “Don’t ask for advice you don’t need or you’ll get advice you don’t want.”

Berkshire Advisors is committed to providing our clients with the highest value consulting services in the industry. “Value” however is determined in part by the quality of our work (something we control) and in part by the needs of the client (something the client must determine). No matter how high the quality of our services, unless those services are aligned with client needs they provide little value and amount to little more than “providing advice the client does not want.”

Seven factors should be considered when determining what consulting approach is best for your organization:

Factor 1: Scope of the desired assessment

  • The broader the project scope the more likely that a traditional comprehensive management study should be performed
  • If elements that increase the study scope are not central to the reasons for conducting the assessment, however, it may be possible to narrow the scope and substantially reduce consulting costs
  • Where an assessment is done to address a small number of issues a reinvented consulting approach has the potential to reduce costs

Factor 2: Extent to which key elements of the assessment are interrelated

  • The more interrelated the study elements the more likely a traditional consulting study is warranted
  • If elements of the study can be evaluated on a stand alone basis a “reinvented” consulting approach will likely reduce costs

Factor 3: Whether the consulting firm is being hired for its judgment and expertise or for its analytic tools and technical expertise

  • Consultant judgment and expertise are generally needed to address issues relating to concerns about leadership, interrelationships among individuals or groups, or to address organizational issues – traditional approaches to management consulting are best able to address such issues
  • When the consultant is being hired for its analytic tools or technical expertise, by contrast, reinvented consulting approaches will likely be more effective and less costly

Factor 4: Extent to which the consultant is being hired for its objective and outside perspective

  • Where a consultant is being hired in part to bring an objective and outside perspective to study issues either a traditional or a reinvented consulting approach may be appropriate
  • In structuring such engagements significant on-site time may need to be incorporated into the study process to provide the credibility clients desiring an outside perspective will need

Factor 5: Whether the consultant is being hired for its access to information on best practices

  • A traditional management study does not need to be performed to gather information on best practices
  • Best practice information can most cost effectively be obtained as part of a funded research project (or reviewing information on best practices that has already been developed)

Factor 6: Extent to which transferring knowledge from the consultant to the client is an engagement priority

  • Reinvented consulting approaches are generally more effective at transferring knowledge from the consultant to the client than traditional consulting approaches
  • Reinvented consulting approaches also provide greater opportunities to use client analysis to support the consulting process

Factor 7: Availability of resources to support the consulting engagement

  • Traditional management consulting engagement require the most resources
  • Reinvented consulting approaches require fewer resources