IMC C2M Connections
Banner

Chair Talk


Welcome to the inaugural edition of C2M Connections IMC USA’s monthly e-newsletter -our newest member benefit. This new format for our newsletter has been in the works for some time now, and I'm pleased to be rolling it out to you now. Our members told us that they wanted information about the consulting profession, industry trends, ethics -information that they could use in their practice and share with their prospects and clients -and we listened. Industry News features easy-to-read executive summaries of noteworthy articles that are relevant to our industry and our membership and drawn from more than 12,000 newspapers, business publications, websites and wire services. These summaries are exclusive, original write-ups -not excerpts -and our goal is to showcase stories of interest that you won’t find in other industry newsletters.

IMC USA News will build on the legacy of our internal newsletter, the Connector, highlighting the accomplishments of our members, provides updates about our latest programs and events, and news about key initiatives and developments within our Institute (IMC USA) and the International Council of Management Consulting Institutes (ICMCI). Read More...
Share FacebookLinkedInTwitter | Web Link

Headlines


Industry News
"When Organizational Memory Stands in the Way"
"Developing an Effective Approach to Third-Party Due Diligence"
"Professional Mentoring: How Business Management Consultants Can Help"
"How Are McKinsey, BCG, Bain, AT Kearney and the Likes Playing the Game in India"
"A Consultant’s Tool Kit"
"The Perilous Pursuit of Best Practice, or Why We Shouldn't All Try to Be Apple"
"The Project Manager's MBA: Upholding Ethics"
"How Effective Are Ethics Codes and Programs?"
"The 5 Commandments of Product Sustainability"
"Customer Retention: Brave New World of Consumer Dynamics"
"How to Develop Your Innovation Management Consulting Business in Tough Times"
"Management Consultants Can Save the World"
"Top Risks Reflect Unsure Business Environment"
"McKinsey Tries to Recruit Mothers Who Left the Fold"

IMC News
Member Accomplishments
GROW!, the conference for successful consultants, is being held at the Mirage in Las Vegas, October 20-22, 2013
IMC and Oregon's Willamette University's Atkinson Graduate School of Management
The IMC Georgia Chapter
Congratulation to those individuals who earned the Certified Management Consultant® (CMC®) designation since Grow!

Industry News


When Organizational Memory Stands in the Way
Bloomberg (03/11/13) Govindarajan, Vijay; Srinivas, Srikanth

Organizational memory can impede a company's progress by instilling biases in planning processes, performance evaluation systems, organizational structures, and human resource policies. One organization able to overcome this hurdle in its transition to a modern business paradigm is Infosys, which first provided IT services exclusively. However, Infosys perceived that its most demanding clients were frustrated by having to work concurrently with multiple service firms, none of which had full accountability. The company noticed an incipient non-linear shift in this frustration, realizing that it would either have to respond rapidly and master the shift or suffer as a result. Infosys saw the need for an organization that would deliver management consulting services, redesign operations, and draft specifications for new IT systems, and then handle their development, testing, installation, and maintenance. The organization also might possibly even assume responsibility for routine client operations such as transaction processing. Infosys also understood that the current organizational memory would be onerous for this new paradigm, so they constructed a parallel world with different people and distinct processes. Their focus was on three core areas—strategic making, accountability, and organizational design. These revisions helped Infosys surmount its organizational memory while holding onto all of the essential components that played a role in the company's success.

Developing an Effective Approach to Third-Party Due Diligence
Compliance Week (03/01/13) Kroll, Karen

Companies tend to focus their anti-corruption efforts on their own employees, but the actions of third-party affiliates can also get them in trouble. Organizations attempting to develop compliance policies and procedures must know where the risks are, which means that they should examine their products, services, customers, sales and operations locations, and transactions involving government officials. Firms should have an efficient third-party due diligence program that can identify and focus on the riskiest business partners in the riskiest nations.
Joseph Spinelli, managing director of global investigations and compliance at Navigant Consulting, says that the government has made it clear that all organizations, regardless of size or third-party representation, "have an obligation to do due diligence." As a result, companies should obtain as much information as possible before working with a third party in order to help demonstrate to government regulators the appropriate steps taken to eliminate risk. Also, smaller firms that have tighter budgets can not assume that they face significantly lower risks than larger organizations.

Professional Mentoring: How Business Management Consultants Can Help
ManagingAmericans.com (03/01/13) Woods, Lisa

Management expert Lisa Woods says individuals requiring help in advancing themselves or their careers may benefit from hiring an external professional mentor, coach, or business management consultant. It is important to first examine the conditions faced by the mentee or his or her company and then find a professional who can best support the mentee's efforts. Searches should not bet limited by region because experience takes precedence over location. It may be useful to turn to consult management blogs or business Web sites to find potential mentors. Before hiring the mentor or consultant, the mentee should inquire about the mentoring style, request at least three references and a resume, contact the references about the mentor's abilities, and verify the mentor's education and employment. Anyone refusing to provide such information should be avoided. After a suitable professional coach or business management consultant is found, it is important to develop a clear working relationship to quickly build trust. This involves working together to create a document or a term sheet for the working relationship including budget, timeline, type of interaction, definition of the support required, deliverables, and success parameters. Goals should be outlined for the immediate future, the next five years, and the next 10 years, and communication should be open to allow the mentee to discuss his or her strengths and weaknesses. Instances where professional mentoring can be beneficial include conducting a due diligence initiative, implementing an IT transition, getting advice for a rebound strategy, and making organizational changes more effectively.

How Are McKinsey, BCG, Bain, AT Kearney and the Likes Playing the Game in India
Economic Times (India) (04/02/13) Mahanta, Vinod

Global consulting firms are raising their game in India in response to economic travails and more stringent clients, competition, and project mandates. At the top end of the consulting space are strategic firms such as McKinsey, BCG, Bain, AT Kearney, and Booz, and occupying the middle and bottom tiers are the consulting branches of tech companies such as IBM and Accenture. Filling in niche positions are boutiques such as Universal Consulting and Avalon Consulting, while vying for a slice of the market are new entrees such as Oliver Wyman and Rolland Berger. ET estimates that between 500 and 600 high-value consulting engagements are awarded yearly, translating into a $250 million to $300 million market.

Although growth in the consulting sector is thriving, Indian consulting penetration is weak compared to developed markets. "We are only scratching the surface in India," notes Oliver Wyman India's Atul Khosla. Although momentum for firms is building despite the slow economy, the nature of expansion is shifting. More than 50 percent of all consulting assignments in the last four to five years have come from newer clients such as family-owned mid-caps, private equity and private equity-owned companies, infrastructure projects, the public sector, and state governments. The nature of work also is undergoing an evolution, with MS Unnikrishnan at Thermax reporting that "earlier assignments were at company level. Now we are focused on making individual businesses globally competitive."

McKinsey's Noshir Kaka says the central theme of the current decade will be capability building, versus the previous decades' focus on ideas, insights, and implementation. Demands from clients are changing as those clients get smarter. Previously a firm's name would have sufficient cachet to win projects, but now there is greater emphasis on partnerships. There also is increasing awareness among companies of distinctions between firms. For strategy or portfolio work they might favor a McKinsey or BCG, while Bain might be selected for strategic diligence, AT Kearney might be preferred for supply chain and operational work, and a Big Four might be tapped for sales distribution reorganization.

A Consultant’s Tool Kit
Grenoble Graduate School of Business (03/19/2013) Meena, Manisha

The management consulting firm Bain & Company recommends the use of several tools to help consultants solve business problems. Change management programs, for example, help organizations implement new strategies and support them during major turnarounds. Ideally, consultants should analyze the current situation, set goals, and conduct a gap analysis to understand the constraints and resources required to achieve the goals. Enterprise risk management tools, meanwhile, take into account the various risks that an organization might encounter in the process of reaching its business goals. Such tools can helps consultants develop a plan to achieve their goals in a controlled risk environment and make better strategic decisions. Another key tool is scenario and contingency planning, which helps an organization be prepared for unanticipated events. This entails considering various scenarios, examining their pros and cons, and selecting the most relevant one. Social media programs comprise another tool that help organizations build their online presence and provide a platform to interact with various stakeholders. Organizations can build brand awareness, improve communication, and obtain feedback via company websites and online communities. Finally, strategic planning is a forward-looking approach that helps organizations form future plans and strategies. Questions that consultants need to answer include, Where are we now? Where do we want to go? How can we get there? What resources do we need to achieve these goals? Strategic planning helps organizations prepare for the future and keep a competitive edge.

The Perilous Pursuit of Best Practice, or Why We Shouldn't All Try to Be Apple
Research and Technology Management (04/13) Vol. 56, No. 2, P. 60 Gobble, MaryAnne M.

Numerous consultants and management specialists caution that the concept of "best practices" in management is being applied far too broadly. The idea of best practices as describing "the one best way" to conduct any given task has taken hold in many sectors. Management consultant Nick Milton says that there are specific industries and tasks where the use of established best practices makes sense, emergency shutdown procedures in a chemical plant for instance. Others, such as WPP Chief Digital Officer for chemistry Bill Evans, say that cognitive biases such as availability bias can lead to an unwarranted preference for "best practices" even when existing practices may not be the best fit for a certain management scenario. Organizational change consultant Stephen Billing says that a focus on best practices can mean that other factors leading to success get overlooked. The result can be a herd mentality where, ironically, no actual innovation is possible and no new best practices emerge. In fact, in many circles, the concepts of best practices and innovation are wrongly conflated to the detriment of actual innovation. Instead, experts advocate an "evidence-based management" approach to best practices: closely studying best practices too see which, if any, may apply to a specific set of circumstances, and understanding that what is understood to be a best practice today may be considered obsolete tomorrow.

The Project Manager's MBA: Upholding Ethics
Construction Business Owner (03/13) Schoppman, Greg

Although ethics and integrity are present in many corporate charters and value statements, it is uncertain how many companies actually put these concepts into practice, notes Gregg Schoppman, a management consultant a FMI, which specializes in the construction industry. Managers are faced with ethical dilemmas on a day to day basis, and such ethical issues should always be addressed even though they are rarely publicized. The core of ethical behavior is created long before an employee makes it to an executive position. In his book, "The Integrity Chain," Ralph James asserts that decisions at the project level are indicators of decisions at the corporate level. As a result, small failures in integrity, or the "little white lie syndrome" at the project level, eventually lead to larger breakdowns. The cost-reporting function at most companies, for instance, often submits inaccurate quantities and percent completes, project managers say. Field managers in turn blame the office because of its inaccurate budget and altered dollar amounts on cost reports. One reason could be that sufficient time to develop the correct budget is not provided. In reality, successful planning takes time, and the integrity chain is affected when companies fail to consider ethics to be a vital aspect of their work or hide losses and cover their tracks to avoid repercussions. Companies can benefit if they form a culture of asking questions in an effort to enhance performance rather than place blame. Ideally, project ethics should be a reflection of a firm’s corporate values.

How Effective Are Ethics Codes and Programs?
Financial Executive (03/13) Vol. 29, No. 2, P. 42 Hopkins, Sheryl L.

Although many companies develop ethics codes and related compliance programs, the question of their practical application and effectiveness is muddied by the persistence of corporate scandals and ethics violations. But such programs can work, provided they are more than just check-the-box exercises and are buttressed by strong systems that encourage compliance as well as deter misconduct via enforcement. Measuring the business case for a strong ethics and compliance program and a culture for ethics may be a tall order, but it is plain in the increasingly global business landscape that a robust program is required not only to adhere to government mandates, but also to bolster the company's brand and reputation. Evidence also suggests that a strong and well-deployed program supports a strong ethics culture in the organization, lowering ethics risk. The Ethics Resource Center's (ERC) 2011 National Business Ethics Survey determined that "by every measure, strong ethics programs and strong ethics cultures produce substantially better outcomes—less pressure, less misconduct, higher reporting and less retaliation—than in weaker ethical environments." The strongest ethics programs exhibited 30 percent observed misconduct in the 2011 poll, versus 89 percent in the weakest programs. Just 6 percent of respondents who saw misconduct in the strongest programs failed to report, and 48 percent did not disclose the observed misconduct in the weaker ethics programs and cultures. Meanwhile, a 2011 ERC Independent Advisory Group Report on the 20th anniversary of the Federal Sentencing Guidelines for Organizations concluded that the guidelines had had a beneficial effect on ethics in the business community.

The 5 Commandments of Product Sustainability
Environmental Leader (03/27/13) Loijos, Alex

Businesses are becoming more aware of the impact of "product sustainability," as indicated by the formation of such initiatives as Organic and Fair Trade labeling, WalMart’s Product Sustainability Index, Nike’s Materials Sustainability Index, and GoodGuide. Product carbon footprinting is also becoming more widespread, and refers to the method of life cycle assessment (LCA) that evaluates a product’s effects on the environment from "cradle to grave." There are prominent consulting companies, university laboratories, and academic journals dedicated to LCA. Simplicity is essential to product sustainability analysis to ensure it is easily communicated and understood and to keep costs down. Simplifying analysis also means less expertise is required to conduct the analysis. This simplicity keeps costly consulting hours down, and consultants can instead add value by implementing strategies to curb environmental impacts. Furthermore, product sustainability metrics need to be incorporated into day-to-day business decisions. This involves expressing them in financial terms and measuring product sustainability continuously. This helps create feedback mechanisms for performance so that performance data can influence daily decision-making.

Customer Retention: Brave New World of Consumer Dynamics
Marketing Week (03/20/13) Handley, Lucy

According to a new survey by Accenture, 85 percent of respondents said a company could have retained their loyalty if they would have addressed their concerns. Of this high number, 69 percent suggested the company should have resolved their issue the first time they contacted the brand, and 55 percent indicated they should have received preferential treatment and rewards for doing more business with the firm. Moreover, 48 percent of respondents said they have switched brands due to poor customer service. The inability of marketers and customer service personnel to respond adequately is a surprise because this is an ongoing trend, says Rachel Barton, managing director for CRM at Accenture UK & Ireland. "There is incredible churn taking place at the moment," according to Barton. "The fact is that companies could have retained 85 percent of consumers who switched just by getting some of the basics right." Customer service must be at the heart of a brand's strategy, but the difficult part is delivering on customer-focused values.

How to Develop Your Innovation Management Consulting Business in Tough Times
InnovationManagement (02/07/13) Diedrichs, Eva

During times of economic crisis, companies tend to become restrictive in their consulting spending and examine the return on investments from consulting services. It is vital for management consultants to develop their client base and provide the right recommendations in a prompt manner. Consultants can also boost their effectiveness and efficiency by leveraging the IMP3prove Approach, which integrates education, benchmarking, and innovation management consulting. Consultancies usually do not have the resources to develop their own systematic approach and tools to assess their clients' management capabilities and performance. The IMP3rove approach provides tools and services to gain the necessary insights into the status quo of the client’s performance prior to forming recommendations for helping the company grow. Insights can be generated within approximately 4 hours and are based on a systematic benchmarking of the company’s management performance. By taking part in the training and certification program, IMP3rove consultants learn how to focus on creating value for their clients in each step of the consulting process. Moreover, the IMP3rove certificates define the services the consultant can offer under the IMP3rove brand. Examples show that entrepreneurs who started their consulting company can accelerate their business development significantly by using the IMP3rove services.

Management Consultants Can Save the World
Slate (02/01/13) Fisman, Ray; Sullivan, Tim

Management can wield a transformative power over the world, and standards of living could be dramatically upgraded through exportation of better management to the rest of the globe. Improved management produces more efficient companies that raise economic output, which may ultimately support higher incomes and wealth for the world’s impoverished. A recent experiment by World Bank and Stanford University researchers in collaboration with Accenture involved randomly assigning a management overhaul to Indian textile firms, while simultaneously following a set of control textile factories to benchmark the impact of good management. The experiment's outcomes included improved production line efficiency and increased profitability. Key to these successes was a strategy that involved designing incentives, guaranteeing clear and well-defined assignments of tasks and responsibilities, and entrenching protocols to handle and monitor inventory and production. The researchers' survey of management practices worldwide demonstrated that the average company has much to gain from managerial guidance and expertise. Evidence also suggests that improved management could yield advantages for sectors such as healthcare and education, as the survey saw a correlation between better management and higher student test scores, better heart-attack survival rates, and shorter patient wait times.

Top Risks Reflect Unsure Business Environment
CFO.com (03/15/13) McDonald, Caroline

A new study from global consulting firm Provititi, entitled Executive Perspectives on Top Risks for 2013, indicates that board members and executives from a variety of industries believe the slow economy and the specter of regulation are the top risks organizations will face this year. Risk management consultant James DeLoach, managing director at Provititi, said the study shows, "that directors and executives are more concerned about what they don't know than what they do know." A majority of the more than 200 board members and executives surveyed said that they were concerned that uncertain economic conditions would slow growth and constrain profitability. Another major concern was that new regulations might impact production and delivery of goods and services. Regulations from the Dodd-Frank and Affordable Healthcare acts were a major concern for the financial services and healthcare industries, while those in the consumer product and restaurant industries worried about increasing cross-border prosecution of bribery cases under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. A third major area of concern was political uncertainty in many national and international markets hampering effective operational planning. Operational issues accounted for five of the top 10 risks, and most respondents rated the current business environment as being significantly risky. Companies in financial services, healthcare, life sciences, technology, media, and communications reported facing the greatest number of risks.

McKinsey Tries to Recruit Mothers Who Left the Fold
Wall Street Journal (02/20/13) P. B1 Kwoh, Leslie

McKinsey & Co. and other large consulting firms are seeking to rehire former female employees who left years ago, many to start families. In a 2011 interview with The Wall Street Journal, McKinsey managing director Dominic Barton said women represented just 25 percent of the firm's "intake," adding that, "if you look at the numbers, we're not where we need to be, so we're losing on the talent side." McKinsey also has a program that lets new mothers take part in a "phase back" program to help them readjust to work after maternity leave, and publishes a guide for mothers titled "Laptops and Lullabies." Bain & Co., meanwhile, has a group of partners that supervises women's initiatives, such as staying in contact with female alumni and promoting flexible work options. Upwards of 100 women, the majority of whom are mothers, have returned to the firm since 2000, says Russ Hagey, Bain's global chief talent officer and a senior partner. The firm says more than 80 percent of its female partners have opted to use flextime. Boston Consulting Group (BCG) says it focuses strongly on recruiting and retaining women through such efforts as part-time options, mentoring, and professional development programs. Lucy Brady, a BCG partner who has three children, says she was appointed partner while working part-time at the firm, which she has done for 10 out of 15 years.


IMC News


Member Accomplishments

What’s the proven value of management consultants? Bill Conerly, PhD (Oregon Southwest Washington) wrote a fascinating article published online at Forbes.com that describes a study sponsored by the World Bank that quantified the value of management consulting. Read the article at: www.forbes.com

Do you have a sales culture? Kathy Maixner (Oregon Southwest Washington) teases out the absolute key element in creating an effective sales culture. Read her insights at: www.forbes.com

A CMC serves his community. Frank DeRosa, CMC, (At-Large), member of the Auburn Industrial Development Authority, has offered to consult with council, pro bono, on the implementation of a quality management framework and establishment of a fiscal management and operational oversight board for his hometown of Auburn, NY. Learn more about by clicking here and here.
GROW!, the conference for successful consultants, is being held at the Mirage in Las Vegas, October 20-22, 2013

It’s the place to be if you want to learn the latest trends in consulting, share networking opportunities with your peers and hear outstanding speakers with cutting edge information.

Our own Somers White FIMC CPAE is opening the conference and will provide information important to everyone attending. A survey of our industry and will introduce the results in his program. We close with Patricia Fripp CPAE, who was named by Meetings and Conventions Magazine as one of the top 10 most electrifying professional speakers in North America.

In between there are exciting sessions on accountability for consulting results, the client’s view of you, an ethics workshop with Mark Hass CMC, FIMC and much more. We have a dynamic dinner and awards program and are including a pre-conference day for free.

Register Today for the conference:click here

Make your hotel reservations today:click here
IMC and Oregon's Willamette University's Atkinson Graduate School of Management

IMC and Oregon's Willamette University's Atkinson Graduate School of Management recently partnered to present IMC's Certificate in Management Consulting program. The weeklong certificate program was taught by Read more..Oregon CMCs Geoff Guilfoy CMC®, Kathie Nelson CMC®, Jo Smith CMC®, Kathy Cuhna CMC® and Ken Hill CMC®.

Willamette University is the second university to offer IMC's Certificate in Management Consulting program. The success of the program has convinced officials at Willamette University to offer the program again this fall. Read more...
The IMC Georgia Chapter

The IMC Georgia Chapter held their Board meeting followed by their second quarter social and networking event on March 21st at the beautiful Regus facility on the corner of Peachtree Street and 14th Street in midtown Atlanta. Regus donated the space and sponsored the event. The location, tours, and service were a big hit with all of our attendees. Regus provides "ready to go" offices from $279 per month in Atlanta with all the support systems of a regular office setup and none of the worries or extra cost. If you haven't checked out your local Regus facilities, I highly recommend that you do so!

Remember, as an IMC member, you get many services for free and a very good rate on others! Many thanks to the national organization for negotiating this great service for members.
Congratulation to those individuals who earned the Certified Management Consultant® (CMC®) designation since Grow!



Abstract News © Copyright 2013 INFORMATION, INC.
Powered by Information, Inc.

April 2013




One Minute Ideas