In fact, the opposite may be the case: for the experienced client, much of the value of a management consultant is a function of fashion; more important than what the consultant advises is who the consultant is, and who else uses the consultant and the consultant’s methods. Then there is the reassurance of buying IBM, of being able to justify expensive fees, and to rely on the understanding that underlies the transaction between manager and management consultant.
The novice client knows nothing of these nuances. Big names and fashionable methods are of no interest. The novice expects the management consultant to earn his keep with straightforward advice about how to improve matters. He assumes the consultant knows about his own business rather than just the consultancy business, that he will bring something extra to the organisation, and generally work his socks off. Why else would anyone want a management consultant? Not all management consultants are well equipped for this hostile environment.
Empirical evidence comes from interviews over a number of years with managers in organisations new to management consultants: trade unions, a variety of Polish organisations and the Church of England. Their success in squeezing value from their management consultants offers lessons for more practiced and perhaps more complacent managers.
Stuart Macdonald | alfa
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Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
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Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
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A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...
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