In-house consulting groups play a critical role in solving an organization’s most essential operations and strategy problems. Internal consultants have numerous benefits over external consultants, including an integrated understanding of the organization, attraction of top talent, high confidentiality levels, follow-through/ implementation, and greater cost-effectiveness. However, forming a team of consultants is a challenging task because the best practices have not spread widely.
Let’s look at how you can form a team of consultants to ensure your organization gets the best from them.
Set achievable objectives
Setting clear goals helps list the team’s priorities and measure success.
Work on distinct projects
An organization should manage internal consultants like a team reporting to one client supervisor. The internal consultants should not have the mandate to reschedule or redefine work and substitute resources. This needs the client team to assign leadership roles to individuals who can exert the required level of control.
Win on merit
Business leaders should have the freedom to hire external or internal consultants they want, and the team should welcome competition. It should establish relationships with leaders across the organization and create proposals. Rather than executing a central mandate, the team should serve the client’s needs to deliver quality projects.
Occasional evaluation of consultant value proposition and skills
In the course of the project, the skillset requires some changes, and the internal team acquires applicable skills. Schedule frequent reviews to search for affordable ways of filling non-professional roles from other sources or internally. The client might get accused of cherry-picking, but there’s no need for them to pay for filler resources or those learning in the job.
Surpass client expectations
Constantly convincing the clients that the advances offered meet or exceed what they can receive externally is essential. You can foster this culture by encouraging the members to voice their opinions and work as a team, outlining explicit values, investing in a training program, asking for client feedback, and celebrating success.
Don’t over-rely on brand
Teams don’t deliver brands but rather projects. Expertise and talent applied the consulting firm to the areas where your organization lacks skills, offers the best chance for value extraction. Just because it’s an established brand like Deloitte or IBM doesn’t guarantee value. The client has the responsibility to extract value. Train your team on how they can extract value from your clients to maximize the results of your initiatives and projects.