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Consultancy Management

3 Things It Takes to Get a Deal on Shark Tank

Everyone I know who has watched ABC’s show Shark Tank has enjoyed it, because it reinvigorates the idea of the American Dream in just an hour per week. It shows that a great idea and hard work can pay off tremendously. But there are nuances to closing the deal, and these are lessons from which consultants too could learn. In an article for Inc., Allison Fass outlines some tips garnered from Kevin O’Leary on how …

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IBM Pays Its Employees to Take Time Off to Solve World Problems

In an article for Fast Company, Ben Paynter dives deeply into the ways that IBM deploys its employees to solve problems that help the world. For instance, in 2016 IBM established IBM Health Corps grants, where they pay their employees to take time off and take on complicated world health issues. And in addition to Health Corps, there are also Corporate Service Corps (“for all manner of nonprofit, government, or social entrepreneurial idea”) and Smarter …

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What Does Bad Strategy Look Like?

Every business purports to have a strategy, but not every strategy is good. A post at Consultants Mind combines the established literature with personal experience to create a picture of what bad strategy looks like. And in fact, bad strategy can take multiple forms. Headed for Oblivion According to McKinsey, bad strategy can (1) fail to face problems, (2) mistake goal-setting as a strategy, (3) lay out bad strategic objectives, and/or (4) be utter fluff. …

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20 Rules to Find and Maintain Clients from David Ogilvy

David Ogilvy was a titan of advertising, and it was not by accident. He operated by rigorous principles that set him apart. In an article for Medium, Robert Williams collects 20 rules that he identified in Ogilvy’s work that allowed Ogilvy to become a master-level consultant. The Outline of Success Regard the hunt for new clients as a sport, but get serious once you actually land the business. Never work for a client so big …

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Hidden Pitfalls of Going Freelance in IT

If you love IT and technology but do not love a desk job, then making the jump into freelancing sounds like a very attractive option. Are you ready to manage all the caveats that come with that newfound freedom though? In an article for CIO.com, Bob Violino collects insights from experts who have been down that road and prepares you for what to expect in the world of IT freelancing. Plotting Past Peril In the …

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Stopgaps Are Still Gaps

When a business problem arises, there are comprehensive solutions and there are fast solutions. Fast solutions are easy and typically inexpensive, whereas comprehensive solutions may be slower and almost certainly cost more. In a post at Consulting 101, Lew Sauder discusses how the cheap solutions do not always turn out so cheap after all. Namely, if you have to address the same problem with some variant of the cheap solution multiple times, then it might …

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Why So Many Big 4 Consultants Fail

Big consultancies often have an “up or out” culture, where you keep climbing the ranks or you get the boot. What is the most effective way to ensure you keep rising though? In an article for Big4.com, Michael Moshiri insists it is all about networking. Yes, everyone knows broadly speaking that networking is important. But Moshiri says that people working at a Big 4 consultancy are setting themselves up for failure if they are not …

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6 Tips in Retrospect to Start a Consulting Firm the Right Way

Life seldom offers a redo, but if you try your best, things usually work out alright. Jill Dyché, now a vice president at SAS, spent most of her career in consulting. And if she could start all over again as a consultant, there are a few things she would do differently. In an article for CIO.com, she describes what she would have done differently, so you can benefit with your own consulting: Would’ve spent more …

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Independent Consultant, Firm Consultant, or Both?

In consulting, you either work for yourself, or you work in a consulting firm. In a post at Consulting 101, Lew Sauder discusses if it is possible for a consultant to be both. Can you work in a firm and still do independent work? If you squint, independent consultants are practically the same as entrepreneurs, except the product is themselves. They often do the brunt of all work themselves, from marketing to actual project execution, …

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Effectively Reporting to the Client Executive

Find out what it is the client executive wants, and then report to that. This is what Lew Sauder says in a post at his blog. You must ask clarifying questions, repeat back what you think you are hearing, and set expectations about how much work is involved in fulfilling requests. In this way, you can prepare reports confidently, knowing that you are only conducting work that has real meaning. For a full explanation, you …

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