Literature Review on Management Consulting, Free Example for Students

Published: 2022-06-14
Literature Review on Management Consulting, Free Example for Students
Type of paper:  Literature review
Categories:  Management
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1701 words
15 min read

Introduction of the Framework

Management consulting is one of the oldest forms of outsourcing that can be conducted by firms and organizations. Management consulting is essential in running and efficiently overseeing productivity in an organization. It has been found through research conducted by Donald Bergh and Patrick Gibbons that firms that engage in the external management consulting exhibit the most significant financial profits and growth. One of the most efficient and effective methods of management consulting practices is experiment design. Experimental design is one valuable tool used in market management and consulting practices. The plans are employed by the management to acquire feedback on several aspects of its operation. Through experimental design, the company can find ways through which it can improve its efficiency, productivity, and effectiveness in the market and towards customer satisfaction. It is achieved through statistical methods, modeling, and analytics and provides managers with a more efficient and sophisticated technique of consulting. It allows several variables in the operation sector to be tested simultaneously. Some of these variables that can be tested include messages, mail formats, product offers, and incentives. In the consulting process, it is essential to ensure that the words, suggestions, and mail formats are well tested and analyzed to receive the actual intended information being passed across.

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Consulting is not an indication of inferiority in intelligence of anyway (Miner, 1971). However it is important that the managers seek the advice of others who are specialists in different sectors of operation. Consultants and analysts provide important information that provides the managers with added advantage in decision making that gives the organization competitive power (Maister, 1993).

Strengths of Experimental Design

The method of management consulting presents several advantages to companies and organizations as compared to other tradition-based approaches to management consulting. One of the advantages is that it provides the room for the management to receive responses from several quarters and interested individuals in the organization's operation or products (Visscher & Irene, 2010). The approach provides the increase in response rates and learning opportunities by increasing the variables that are rested in management procedures and identifying the most crucial variables to the organization. The method has been used in various response facilities such as email and online marketing and most recently in call centers and customer experience program. Its application provides customers, external consultants and other stakeholders with an opportune to voice their views and responses to the organization.

Strength of the method of consulting is that it provides a broad scope framework for organization and management study and analyzing. The process allows the management to examine different contexts in the market (Kipping, 2002). Some of the structures that may be factored into the experimental design are; benchmarking which entails comparing the performance of the organization to other competing organizations (Boxwell & Robert, 1994); balanced Scorecard which is accessible from the implementation of using experimental design as a method of management consulting and provides the room for the management to measure variables that go beyond the financial aspects of the organization (Maisel, 1992); porter's Five Forces which provides for the company to measure and determine the prospective profitability of the organization.

The experimental design method gives the management the opportunity to study all these features and analyze them resenting the chance for the company to grow in all aspects of its products and operations. The control of these variables can get sufficient information it needs for the decision making and other procedures of the company.

The number of attributes that the experimental design provides for the testing and response by the stakeholders is high as compared with the traditional approaches. For the organization's success, the experimental variables should be able to factor in all aspects of the company's practices ranging from the financial factors, employee motivation, and market forces. The management can then combine those factors that are best performing and crucial to the activity of the company to provide significant and compelling offers that other competing companies cannot afford or manage to offer to the customers. This method is very crucial in acquiring, retaining and upgrading customers. The response opportunity provided in the experimental design method makes it appealing to the customers since they are assured that their concerns are received and are being considered by the company.

Analytics and statistics used in the experimental design model of management consulting have proved to provide answers to several management queries such as customer satisfaction and market characteristics. The method offers new and relatively fast means of gathering necessary information on consumer behaviors and market features that can help the management improve its customer and market base. The value received from the analytics depends on the development of rigorous but straightforward approaches to the design of the experiments. Some of the most important aspects of experimental design are identifying correlation and causality. There are several steps in developing an operation that is important in the determination and the analysis of the outcome. Several tests are done before a conclusion is made. The management can then determine from the experiments how a slight change in a single factor can affect the outcomes from the organization.

Weaknesses of Experimental Design

However, the experimental methods of management consulting have their weaknesses as well. One of the shortcomings of this method of discussion is the complexity in designing the experiments and organizational preparation. When developing an investigation, the variables are generated, and then the standards by which these variables are measured are determined. This is a complicated procedure that in some cases may mean seeking the services of specialists. Even after acquiring the methods, variables, and standards, the management is faced with another challenge of preparing the organization for the experiment.

Another weakness of the method is false conclusions that are caused by the pressure to publicize the performance or bias by the company to attract more customers. After the experiments are completed, it is straightforward for the company to give false conclusions that are favorable to the company rather than the actual picture of the company as depicted from the experiments (Simmons, Nelson, & Simonsohn, 2011). The false results can also be occasioned by the researchers researching if they have a chance of getting any benefits from the results. This challenge can, however, be minimized through the use of double-blind design where participants are assigned to different experimental groups without the knowledge of the researcher. This reduces the chances of getting false pleasing results that may tend to favor the company or specific individuals.

Another weakness that could be related to experimental design as a method of management consulting is cost of using the method (Schilling, 2013). This cost is not only measured in terms of financial implications but also factoring in the time spent in conducting the research and analyzing the variables. Experiment design requires the statistical data and variables to be critically analyzed. In some cases the analysis of this data may require the inclusion of a specialist who may mean additional costs incurred in the process (Kipping, 2002). Again the process if data collection analysis publishing and formulation of strategies from the research could be long. This means that the solutions provided or information intended to be passed to the management is to a certain degree delayed.

Applicability in Management Consulting

Several organizations have put this method to use with different goals. Chicago's LearnMetrics management used the experimental design for management consulting to determine the technology platform the company should invest in to provide the best educational outcomes for the customers. After a series of experiments, he concluded. In this case, the experimental design was used as a consultative feature for market composition and customer needs. The information received was then used by the company to improve the quality of the products. Robert Cialdini used the method to identify the best practices they could use to encourage customers to reduce energy consumption. After a study that tested the interventions, the company arrived at the best process of creating consumer awareness (Villaveces, 2016).

In the implementation of the experimental design method as a method of management consulting several aspects have to be considered. It is essential to determine the number of variables that are to be believed in the experiment and what the factors should cover (Ader, Mellenberg, & Hand, 2008). It is essential to identify the intention, goals, and objectives of the company and how the experiment, factors, and variables being implemented are going to help in the accomplishment of the formulated goals and objectives. Another factor to be considered is the cost of the implementation and use of the method as compared to other ways that can be used to achieve the same results for the company (Ader, Mellenberg, & Hand, 2008). The influence of the factors and outcomes used in the experiment are to be critically analyzed as well as the response channels to ensure the method is successful in achieving its purpose.

The method is efficient and effective in management consulting since it can be used as a diagnostic tool as well as finding solutions to provides solutions to the problems that could be identified in the organization. Using Experiment design as a method of management consulting entails research. This is one of the strengths of the framework since from the research, key solutions and alternatives that improve the organization are raised. This makes the method effective in the outcome that arises from following the recommendations raised from the research and experiment. From this, the management can go ahead to improve qualities and even devise technical mechanisms to curb procrastinated issues and problems in the organization.


Ader, Mellenberg, & Hand. (2008). "Advising on Research Methods: A consultant's companion".

Boxwell, J., & Robert, J. (1994). Benchmarking for Competitive Advantage. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Kipping, M. (2002). "Trapped in their wave: the evolution of management consultancies," . Oxford: Blackwel.

Maisel, L. S. (1992). "Performance measurement: the Balanced Scorecard approach". Journal of Cost Management, 47-52.

Maister, D. (1993). Managing the professional service firm. New York: Free Press.

Miner, J. (1971). Success in management consulting and the concept of eliteness motivation. Academy of Management Journal, pp. 367-378.

Schilling, M. A. (2013). Strategic management of technological innovation. McGraw-Hill Education.

Scott Armstrong and Roderick J. Brodie (1994). "Effects of portfolio planning methods on decision making: experimental results" (PDF). . Science...

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