Thursday, January 24, 2019
My January "Chicago Business Journal" Column Has Been Published
Friday, January 18, 2019
Process vs. Content Consulting
Content consultants offer expertise in one function (i.e. accounting) or industry (i.e. aviation). My most successful consulting engagements—where I really improve my clients—come as a process consultant, where I help them with strategy and change. Companies are full of content experts. What they really need help with are identifying and processing change / improvements
Learning AND Doing
After you attend a seminar or read a book just pick one or two improvements, ignore the rest, and work on implementing them successfully. You return on investment on the book or seminar will be much higher than if you greedily try to process everything to "get your money's worth".
Monday, January 14, 2019
Business Strategy vs. Implementation
For help with business strategy, it is better to use a solo or boutique firm, such as Puri Consulting.
When you engage a single, highly skilled and experienced consultant, you can develop a focused plan around a few, key changes that let you leverage great results, without disruption to your existing business. You can get a 10:1 return in terms of resources spent vs. results.
With large consulting firms, they have an army of young consultants that they have to put to work. These consultants, who don't have many years of experience in the business world, are taught to implement the firm's pet "best practice" model. They then descend on your business and create 40 page Power Points on how to convert your business over to their preferred model. The result is an ambitious plan that, during implementation, results in disruptions to normal business and large re-learning curve for employees. The return may only net 1.2:1.
The best results are gained from using the small consulting firm to create the strategy, and then use the large consulting firm to handle the implementation.
Sunday, January 13, 2019
Business is the Same Way
“Football is a simple game complicated by idiots” ~ Bill Shankly
Thursday, January 10, 2019
Focus on External AND Internal Systems for E-Commerce Success
Many E-commerce companies focus attention on the design of the customer experience, and the user interfaces that customers use. But the best ones also focus on the employee experience and the design of user interfaces that their employees use when servicing customers.
This is important because I have seen many incidents where the customer experience was affected because employees trying to provide customer support where hamstrung by poorly designed and functioning internal systems.
Wednesday, January 9, 2019
Business Agility: Workplace Processes Must Change Along With The Rest of The Business
One of my passions is helping people do their jobs better, so both their work satisfaction and the company's bottom line are improved.
Invariably, processes become complex, with unnecessary steps, because business is dynamic. Things are always changing and, unless an effort is made to adjust processes, they will never be optimum for what is currently being worked on.
However, it's a cycle: the extra steps cause us to fall behind, so we spend all our time doing BAUs (business as usual), so we don't have time to step back and "work ON our business instead of IN the business".
This is the area that I shine in because, unlike a large consulting company (which sends in hordes of junior associates to create a large Powerpoint deck on how to massively change processes), I can come in quietly and, with my decades of experience, and my Strategic Simplicity® "scalpel", carve out small, but powerful, changes that are easily to implement, and dramatically improve results.
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