Management Consultants and management consulting firms tend to formulate their successful approaches based on fundamental principles of the business equally known to everybody. It is rather simple to observe and evaluate consultants who abide by their company guidelines rather than basing their evaluation on the individual needs of an organization.
That is where the smaller management consulting firms take the lead in innovation and creativity. Without being too centralistic, it is important to emphasize that large organizations, including large management consulting firms, are prone to establish standard operating procedures or protocol which is rather rigid and inflexible. Certainly, there are exceptions, including very large companies that can be flexible and adaptable. Yet leadership’s nature and fundamental basics dictate that a strict protocol is necessary to manage a large organization.
Hence, as a general rule, it is rather important to evaluate management consulting firms and their performance preliminarily based on their organizational size. At first glance, it sounds too simple, but it is not. Smaller organizations, including management consulting firms, are inherently forced to compete with larger organizations that have several layers of research and development, layered organizational management, as well as an inherent bureaucracy that is established to abide by a chain of command and create efficiency, yet actually, achieve the opposite. Logically as well as practically, this is not a suitable approach for smaller organizations. Just imagine a 20 to 50-person-strong operation establishing long decision-making procedures that would delay actions and reduce productivity.
It is true to argue that small organizations, including smaller management consulting firms, encounter unique challenges, such as limitations on resources, including human capital and financial means. Yet those challenges are not very likely to limit successful operations on behalf of the client because of the availability of simple solutions that may include third-party resources.
It is important to point out that most of the above statements are theoretical and philosophical. There are certainly many exceptions that might render those statements void. However, in terms of general assumptions, it is logical and viable to assume that because of limitations of resources, smaller organizations, including management consulting firms, are forced to become more effective, efficient, and flexible to ensure their survival.
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