Consulting toolkit creating a workplan

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Consulting toolkit creating a workplan

  1. 1. CONSULTING TOOLKIT Setting up the Problem Solving Creating a Workplan© 2007-2012 IESIES Development Ltd. All Ltd. Reserved © 2007-2012 Development Rights All Rights Reserved
  2. 2. From Issue tree to workplan Every project requires a plan…… …..before you commit to a scope and timeline © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved
  3. 3. Your workplan starts with your issue tree and plans the fact- based analysis you will need to identify the best solution1. What is the situation? 2. What is the key question? 3. Structure the question (& generate alternatives) 4. Fact-based analysis 5. Choose solution 6. Kick the tyres 7. Craft storyline © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved and “pack”
  4. 4. Your workplan must develop facts to evaluate all the possiblesolutions, so you can narrow down on the best one X Some branches of the X X issue tree can be X eliminated with “back of X X X an envelope” calculations X X X X X Others will require X detailed analysis X X X X  Eventually you will be left with 1-2 solutions that you can back up with facts © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved
  5. 5. There are 5 stages in moving from your issue tree to your workplan WORKPLAN 3) Ask yourself what analysis/evidence would prove that Hypothesis? 2) Create a Hypothesis 1) Phrase every sub-issue on your workplan as aISSUE TREE question © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved
  6. 6. Determining what analysis/evidence is required is the creative part of fact-based problem-solving Analogies? (e.g. to other WORKPLAN industries or countries) Benchmarking? Comparisons to best practice? Expert judgement? Evaluation vs 3) Ask yourself what criteria? analysis/evidence would prove that Hypothesis? Process mapping?Conjoint analysis? 2) Create a Modelling? Hypothesis •Breakeven •Costing Organisational •Price Elasticity mapping? 1) Phrase every sub-issue on your •Supply/Demand workplan as a •Valuation Scenarios? •EconomicsISSUE TREE question •Operations © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved
  7. 7. After considering the analysis required, next consider where the data will come from Internal Client data? •Budget/strategic Client WORKPLAN plan workshop? •MIS •Financials •Other consultants’ 4) Ask yourself how you reports will get thatDesk Research• Google data/evidence?• Private Databases (e.g. Bloomberg) Interviews? 3) Ask yourself what -Internal to client• Internal databases (e.g. analysis/evidence would “sanitised” client work) -External (e.g. prove that Hypothesis? customers, investors, dist• Government stats ributors, industry 2) Create a experts, equity analysts) Hypothesis Market Research? 1) Phrase every (e.g. surveys, focus sub-issue on your groups, monte carlo) workplan as a ISSUE TREE question © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved
  8. 8. The final stage is to assign responsibilities across your team, and have individuals commit to deadlines WORKPLAN 5) Assign to a person and agree deadline 4) Ask yourself how you will get that What is the data/evidence? trade-off the project manager makes here? 3) Ask yourself what analysis/evidence would prove that Hypothesis? 2) Create a Hypothesis 1) Phrase every sub-issue on your workplan as aISSUE TREE question © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved
  9. 9. Your workplan will be your key project management tool if you maintain it and keep it up-to-dateIssue Hypothesis Analysis Data Who? Deadline Status? Sources1.1 Can 1.1 Kingsford can Financial model of Kingsford David Market research DoneKingsford increase profit $2m price elasticity and internal data finished 4thgrow profit by increasing prices retailer reaction; Retailer and Interviews complete Donethrough 5% impact on KC and salesforce 12thincreasing retailer profits interviews Model complete 15thpricing? On track Market Analysis done 20th research survey The key: A living document, not do once and file Tip: Use spreadsheet, not project management software – easier for the team to update. Google docs: https://spreadsheets.google.com/spreadsheet/pub?hl=en_US&hl=en_US&key =0AgXFZ2Yj2yQhdHJDRmtnZEU3azhWRlNYcFI1bzFDMmc&output=html © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved
  10. 10. Experienced consultants use hypothesis-based problem solvingMcKINSEY PROBLEM-SOLVING APPROACH •Avoid “boiling the ocean” •Don’t “reinvent the wheel” •Use 80/20 – key issues, key drivers •Deliver “a chart a day” © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved
  11. 11. Set your meeting schedule up earlyPROJECT MEETING SCHEDULE Regular Major Reviews Team Weekly Monthly Client Bi-weekly Interim Final Faculty Monthly Pre-interim Adviser Pre-final What will your team meeting schedule be? What will your client meeting schedule be? © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved
  12. 12. Once you have your draft workplan, use it to drive your projectHOLDING PRODUCTIVE MEETINGS• What is the purpose of your team meetings?• What is the best use of your time together?• What can be better done outside the meeting?• What is the purpose of your client meeting?• What format can serve this purpose efficiently? © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved
  13. 13. CLASS EXERCISE: Brainstorm what you want on your Google Project SiteUSING A WEBSITE TO COORDINATE YOUR PROJECT •Calendar (team meetings, client meetings, milestones, deadlines) •Current workplan (Google Docs so everyone can share) •Formal documents (proposal, progress review) •Contact sheet •Store/Share your work •Interview s (Schedule, Guides, Notes) •Output (presentations, mini-packs, models, analysis) •Surveys (links, photos) •Research/Library (Articles, weblinks, documents) •Get inspired by other project management sites (e.g. https://sites.google.com/a/altostrat.com/project-eggplant/Home) •Could your website BE part of your deliverable? •Keep private to your team + me + your client – check confidentiality ASSIGNMENT: SET UP YOUR PROJECT SITE AND START USING IT © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved
  14. 14. Once you have your draft workplan, use it to drive your project• Is it feasible in the time available?• What are the long leadtime items (e.g. external interviews with senior executives, or market surveys)• Will the evidence be compelling? How can we make it stronger?• What are the most critical pieces of analysis, driving the most important hypotheses?• Consulting intellectual integrity – change your hypothesis if the evidence does not prove it! © 2007-2012 IES Development Ltd. All Rights Reserved

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