Difficult Truths – Too Big to Swallow – Pt I

The more obvious the obviousness, the greater clarity of the clarificated clearness, the increased definition of the definitive definication… It just seems that the pill becomes bigger

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Gigs. For a musician, a sweating room of heaving over-aged teenagers moshing like prairie dogs ‘neath a bald-eagle convention. For the sculptor, a commission to capture the leonine features of some know-nothing numbskull with more money than sense thanks to an oversized stock market bet on cat-poo-derived watermelon-hollowing embrochure-moistening devices

[who knew?]

And for ourselves and our bretheren

[dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to join this consultant and this dumb, rich client in holy statement of work]

the chance to pitch new work to clients based on little more than a whisper of a slight concern of some hint of a glimmer of a business case.


Ah, the sweet adrenaline rush of the handshake, the nod, the pat on the back, the elevator to the lobby, a quick walk to the bank and then off to the local cantina for nachos, quesadillas and muchas margaritas.

And our prime gigs

[divisible by themselves and 1 only]

generally fall in the roundabout region of

[in no particular order – we’ll take billing wherever we find it – and obviously, whatever you need us to do is ABSOLUTELY the most important thing for us right now – in fact, you’re way ahead of other clients in considering this as an area of focus – did we ever mention to you that we’re interested in using you as a case study for our upcoming book]

the generic classifications of:

  • Change Management
  • Business Strategy
  • Organization Culture
  • Talent Management
  • People Management
  • Leadership

Now, let’s see how much background there is available to the modern corporation on these subjects. We’ll use a tried and tested cross-referencing categorization indexing system to quantify the available information: # of books available at Amazon. Here are our meta-analytical findings:

  • Change Management (47,416 books)
  • Business Strategy (56,102 books)
  • Organization Culture (23,956 books)
  • Talent Management (7,206 books)
  • People Management (33,011 books)
  • Leadership (256,503 books)

Given this amount of literature, anyone in our noble profession would be right to consider what these numbers mean for the chances that we will be out of business tomorrow?

[more so even than whether our accounting arm is screwing things up so badly that we have no choice but to split so that we can continue to, ahem, fleece those dumb, rich clients]

We’ll tell you what it means… Seek gigs in the following order of priority:

  1. Leadership
  2. Business Strategy
  3. Change Management
  4. People Management
  5. Organization Culture
  6. Talent Management

Check your last seven years’ worth of engagements. Give them a theme. A simple, as it were, label such as (e.g.) “Leadership”. Put them in a frequency graph. We think you’ll find the following order of frequency/$$$ billed:

  1. Leadership
  2. Business Strategy
  3. Change Management
  4. People Management
  5. Organization Culture
  6. Talent Management

Are you getting our thread? Catching our drift? OK. Let’s check the potential book of work you have at the moment, the conversations you’re having with clients, the concerns on their minds:

  1. Leadership
  2. Business Strategy
  3. Change Management
  4. People Management
  5. Organization Culture
  6. Talent Management

OK. You’ve got it now, right? Right?


We’ll be back soon to bring the light…



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