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This chapter focuses on the circumstances under which active clients in universities construct external management consultants as actors. Much research focuses on how…
This chapter focuses on the circumstances under which active clients in universities construct external management consultants as actors. Much research focuses on how consultants legitimize decisions and trends in business organizations, but we know little about how consultants become legitimized as actors in other organizational fields. In the academic field, clients are embedded in a variety of organizational settings embedded in different institutional logics, which determine their sense making. By analyzing how consultants are legitimized, the authors contribute to a better understanding of the organizational preconditions that support the construction of an external expert as an actor. By focusing on IT and strategy consulting in academia, further, the authors discuss the role of competing institutional logics in legitimization processes and the importance of intra-organizational communities.
This study’s purpose is to examine whether providing prior consulting services influences internal auditors’ subsequent assessments when providing assurance services to…
This study’s purpose is to examine whether providing prior consulting services influences internal auditors’ subsequent assessments when providing assurance services to assist management in its assessment of internal control over financial reporting. A behavioral experiment is used, with internal auditors as participants. We provide some evidence that internal auditors who perform prior consulting services are less likely than others to conclude that an identified control deficiency is a material weakness, but only when the deficiency is directly related to the prior consulting services performed. Limitations include relatively small sample sizes and manipulation check failure rates that, although consistent with several prior studies, are somewhat high. If internal auditors have provided consulting services, they may want to consider limiting the assurance services provided to management that are more directly related to their consulting services. While prior studies have examined the effects of internal auditors’ role in designing internal controls on subsequent services, this is the first study to focus on the impact of providing internal audit consulting services on subsequent assurance services.
This chapter presents the findings from an exploratory mixed-methods study that examined the significance of social location(s) and intersectionality in shaping the…
This chapter presents the findings from an exploratory mixed-methods study that examined the significance of social location(s) and intersectionality in shaping the opportunities and experiences of an international sample of individuals engaging in education consulting work. Educational consulting is a growing field, attracting entrepreneurial professionals from practitioner and academic communities around the world (Gunter & Mills, 2017); however, very little research exists on this diverse and diffused group of workers. The research sought to answer two questions: (a) What is the influence of social identity and social position(s) on education consulting opportunities and experiences? (b) What benefits and challenges do educational development consultants experience in their work? Insights from feminist intersectionality theory (Crenshaw, 1989, 1991) and theories concerning implicit bias (Williams, 2014) guide the analysis and discussion. The central argument made, based on the findings from the online survey and interviews with consultants, is that identity and social positioning are significant factors shaping who secures contracts and the nature and value of such experiences for individuals’ personal and professional development, as well as their professional contributions and impact overall. The findings clearly suggest that identity and social position are believed to be influential as enabling and constraining factors on education consultants work experiences. While geographic location emerged as pivotal in shaping who had access to consulting opportunities, intersections with socioeconomic status, class, ethnicity, and age were thought by participants to either further marginalize them or enhance their consulting opportunities and experiences.
The “resources, dynamic capabilities and competences perspective” (Sanchez, 2001) has challenged firms to apply these concepts to improve their competitive position…
The “resources, dynamic capabilities and competences perspective” (Sanchez, 2001) has challenged firms to apply these concepts to improve their competitive position. Management consulting firms may assist clients in these efforts. However, the roles that management consulting firms fulfill in these processes can differ considerably and are under-researched. Therefore, insight in these different roles and the impact of these roles on clients’ competitive positioning in their industries is required. The purpose of this paper is to develop a conceptual framework that highlights the importance of distinguishing both roles and the implications for management consulting firms and for their clients. We illustrate the framework by elaborating on the relationship between both roles and the strategic renewal context of client firms. We conclude by pointing out the increasing importance of the competence leverage role of management consulting firms and how this development might contribute to a more hypercompetitive context for their clients.
Purpose – This chapter traces the creation of a market for strategy by management consulting firms during the second half of the twentieth century in order to demonstrate…
Purpose – This chapter traces the creation of a market for strategy by management consulting firms during the second half of the twentieth century in order to demonstrate their impact in shaping debates in the subject and demand for their services by corporate executives.
Design/methodology/approach – Using historical analysis, the chapter draws on institutional theory, including institutional isomorphism. It uses both primary and secondary data from the leading consulting firms to describe how consultants shifted from offering advice on organizational structure to corporate strategy and eventually to corporate legitimacy as a result of the changing economic and regulatory environment of the time.
Findings/originality/value – This study provides a historical context for the emergence of corporate and competitive strategy as an institutional practice in both the United States and around the world, and provides insights into how important this history can be in understanding the debates among consultants and academics during strategy's emergence as an academic subject and practical application.
There is still no generally accepted quality model of consulting services. This is particularly the case for management consulting projects, where scope is often…
There is still no generally accepted quality model of consulting services. This is particularly the case for management consulting projects, where scope is often indefinite. The purpose of this paper is to identify the clients’ underlying utility preferences and their perceived quality dimensions.
The research is a qualitative data collection from 22 expert interviews performed in the financial service sector. Interviewees from the client-side were decision-makers from different hierarchical levels with considerable experience in working with consultants, while the consultant sample was obtained by selecting professionals with relevant project experience. The model development was based on the grounded theory.
Based on a content analysis of a 600-page transcript of interviews, it was found that customers construct their judgments on consulting service quality through five main attributes: consultants, client adaption, consulting process, deliverables and communication. Because of the strong overlaps of the attributes, four better separable quality dimensions – as a conceptual model – were identified: expertise, relations, involvement and performance.
Among managerial implications for consulting firms, support of buying organization in setting clear project objectives, flexibility in partnership and readiness for overperformance can be underlined.
There is little empirical research that focuses on the conceptualization of management consulting service quality from a client perspective. The value of the paper is the exploration of perceived service quality dimensions of management consulting projects and a consulting context-specific list of quality attributes.
Companies in the business‐to‐business segment increasingly try to expand their product offerings into customer solutions offerings. This often implies adding value through…
Companies in the business‐to‐business segment increasingly try to expand their product offerings into customer solutions offerings. This often implies adding value through professional services such as systems integration and business consulting related to the parent organization’s products. The addition of a consultative component to the product business both poses new challenges and provides new possibilities for the product organization’s innovation processes. We argue that corporate consulting units provide a vital source of knowledge for organizations seeking to increase their innovation capacity by learning about and from their customers. The current paper discusses the knowledge created in such consulting business as well as the filters that hinder utilizing this knowledge in the innovation processes of the product‐oriented organization.
Explores the extent to which academic offerings are serving the consulting industry and identifies ways that academia can help. The numbers of management consulting…
Explores the extent to which academic offerings are serving the consulting industry and identifies ways that academia can help. The numbers of management consulting courses, field experiences in consulting and consulting concentrations by graduate business schools were tracked over a three‐year period to assess the current state of offerings. A survey of members of the Academy of Management's Management Consulting Division was conducted to gather perceived developmental needs for career stages and types of consulting. Proposes the potential future of courses in management consulting. Provides suggestions for course offerings to meet developmental needs by career stages of consultants that are currently being overlooked. Offers practical advice to academia to serve the consulting industry better and ideas for the consulting industry to consider in the ongoing development of consultants. Encourages managers who engage consultants to demand better educated consultants. Further research is needed to investigate the developmental needs of internal consultants and the apparent resistance of the consulting industry to turn to academia as a resource.