What the heck does a consultant DO, exactly? – Management Consulting 101



People say that I solve #businessproblems. That’s not wrong. But it’s way over-simplified. What does it mean to “solve problems”? What specifically do #consultants do to do that? So let’s put it this way. Think of #managementconsultants, especially entry-level ones as “content ambassadors”. We act like the bridge between a complicated client context with various needs, conditions, and attributes and a massive back-end network of knowledge and experts. This sounds simple but it’s not. There is a lot of slicing and shovelling involved. Let’s look at an example. I was in charge of the cement workstream and the key question was: should the client close down the plant? Yes, I have a massive network of experts behind me but there’s no way they can answer that question given how little they know about the client and market context. As the #consultant in charge, I have to analyze the problem, breaking it into smaller parts… In order to know if the client should close the plant or not, we need to know if we can turnaround their negative profits and if yes, how long does it take? Then into the first branch, I explore ways to improve sales and ways to cut costs. Suppose I was studying the costs and realize logistics is one of the biggest. Then only at this point would I choose from the network a cement logistics expert to talk to. Is this clear enough for ya?
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