More Thoughts on the Rise of Management Consulting

A very interesting response to our recent podcast "I Consult, Therefore I Am," from a consultant who blogs here.

Thanks for the podcast. Six years in management consulting, and a tremendous amount of what you said is true. A few additional hypotheses on the rise of management consulting:

1) The massive turnover of executives (CMOs average less than 2 years) creates a type of rotating vacuum on the leadership team. Someone is either leaving, or just arrived.

2) CXO are running out of time to think. Drucker said that executives should have 1/2 of their time to think through problems. That is certainly not the case with reporting requirements (SOX), end-of-quarter sales push, conference calls all day long that stretch from India to California.

3) Executive have become a bit lazy. They seek “benchmarking” and “best practices” as a surrogate for real strategy (know what activities to NOT do).

4) Consulting costs have become a fixed cost (like audit, or advertising). For the budgeting cycle, it is copy/paste to the next fiscal year x 103 percent to adjust for inflation.