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Management Consulting Productivity Hacks

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Management consultants are brutally efficient. They not only are taught to do their work fast, but also are very good in selecting the right issues. I know it from first-hand experience as I spent my first 5 years in this hostile environment of top consulting companies. Yes, we worked sometimes 10-15 hours a day; 6-7 days a week but we managed with a small team to do in 3 months what the whole company was not able to do in years. Management consultants’ efficiency stems from 3 things: good organization, efficiency in daily activities and extremely good skills in picking the right topics. I think that those skills are crucial and I will teach how to acquire them.
In this presentation I will show you how to do the right things fast and efficiently so you can enjoy fully your work and life (depending what are your priorities ;) . The presentation is based on my 11 years of experience as a consultant in top consulting companies and as a Board Member responsible for strategy, improvement and turn-arounds in biggest companies from FMCG, SMG, B2B sector that I worked for. On the basis of what you will find in this course I have trained over 100 business analysts and consultants who now are Investment Directors, Senior Analyst, Directors in Consulting Companies, Board Members etc.
I do not like to overcomplicate things so in every lecture I will be quite straightforward. In every lecture I described a different hack and I give examples how to use it, especially in services such as consulting. To every lecture you will find attached (in additional resources) many useful files: examples shown in the lecture, furthers suggestion, exercises etc.. If you don’t find something that you need let me know - I will try to prepare something and I will add to the presentation
In the presentation I use 6 main frameworks: 80/20 rule (Pareto Principle), lean manufacturing, theory of constraints, getting things done, critical chain method, lean startup

Published in: Business

Management Consulting Productivity Hacks

  1. 1. 1 Management consultant productivity hacks How to be lazy and still get things done
  2. 2. 2 Introduction
  3. 3. 3 Management consultants are brutally efficient
  4. 4. 4 In this presentation I will show you how to do the right things fast and efficiently so you can enjoy fully your work and life
  5. 5. 5 What will we talk about? Selection Faster pace Team work ▪ Issue tree ▪ Priorities ▪ Low hanging fruits ▪ Benchmarks ▪ 80/20 rule ▪ SMART goals ▪ To-do list ▪ Tools ▪ Bottlenecks ▪ Multitasking ▪ Emails ▪ Folder structure ▪ Simplify ▪ Standards and templates ▪ Iteration ▪ Smart batching and 1 piece flow ▪ Automation and Delegation ▪ Zero Defect Rule ▪ Knowing for your customer and being him ▪ Tools ▪ Time budget ▪ Collect knowledge ▪ Bottlenecks ▪ Up-or-out ▪ Manage expectations ▪ Sprints ▪ Universal soldiers ▪ Oh no methods ▪ Meetings ▪ Australian race ▪ Templates, Modules, Standards
  6. 6. 6 Which frameworks will we use? Getting things done 80/20 Theory of constraints Lean manufacturing Critical Chain Lean startup
  7. 7. 7 What you will see in this presentation is are part of our on-line course on how to be productive. You can get it with all the additional resources with great discount Click to check my course Management Consulting Productivity Hacks $45 $15
  8. 8. 8 How to select things that it makes sense to concentrate on?
  9. 9. 9 What to do and what NOT to do?
  10. 10. 10 It makes more sense to stand still than to chase the wrong goals
  11. 11. 11 If you are traveling on a train, before trying to speed it up check whether you are heading in the right direction.
  12. 12. 12 See the forest first and then the trees
  13. 13. 13 Can't see the forest for the trees
  14. 14. 14 Rules that will help you see the forest and not get distracted by the many trees around you Go from general to specific Look for main drivers (up to 5) Start with an empty page Be critical and selective Get views from different angels Don’t read too much Set the stopping point for details Don’t go too fast into details Set time limits Go to the forest
  15. 15. 15 Example of how to see the forest first – consulting project. Many go too fast to details and do not see the general picture Going from specific to general Ask for all data (50 points) Go through data Ask for more data Analyze all data Find ways to cut costs
  16. 16. 16 It makes much more sense to start from the general picture and only after this go to details. It the case of consulting project that would mean start with i.e. asking for cost structure and only going in details for most important items Going from general to specific Ask cost structure Create hypotheses for the main cost position Ask only for data to check hypotheses Analyze the selected data Find the most important ways to cut costs
  17. 17. 17 As a result you get the work done 5-10 times faster and almost all the possible effect Going from specific to general Going from general to specific Ask for all data (50 points) Go through data Ask for more data Analyze all data Find ways to cut costs Ask cost structure Create hypotheses for the main cost position Ask only for data to check hypotheses Analyze the selected data Find the most important ways to cut costs 5-10 x faster You get 75-95% of the impact
  18. 18. 18 Use simple math
  19. 19. 19 Whenever somebody mentions math you see the dreaded formulas
  20. 20. 20 There are some rules that are worth following Find drivers Round to integers Calculate in your mind Do sampling afterwards Write down the rough values ▪ Main things that certain thing depends on ▪ Instead of multiplying 2,3 by 3,61 multiple 2 by 4 Make educated guess
  21. 21. 21 Imagine that you want to use simple math to estimate how long you will wait in the queue. You should use the following simple formula Number of people in the queue x Number of cash tilts Time per 1 customer
  22. 22. 22 If you try to calculate the using the exact digits you may get lost….. Number of people in the queue Time per 1 customer Number of cash tilts 32 2.33 Time you will wait In min 23.4 Number of people in the queue x Number of cash tilts Time per 1 customer
  23. 23. 23 Yet, if you round it up to integers you get fast a good-enough answer Number of people in the queue Time per 1 customer Number of cash tilts 32 2.33 30 23 20.0 Time you will wait In min 23.4 Number of people in the queue x Number of cash tilts Time per 1 customer
  24. 24. 24 Issue tree
  25. 25. 25 Issue tree is a concept that help you guess in a structured manner the problems, reasons causing those problems and on the basis of this decide what should be analyzed Area of analysis Area 1 Problem 1 Problem 2 Possible Reason 1 Possible Reason 2 Possible Reason 3 Possible Reason 4 Possible reasonsSuspected problems Analysis to be performed Analysis 1 Analysis 2 Analysis 3 Analysis 4
  26. 26. 26 Have a look at an issue tree example for a chicken meat producer. We guess that he has 3 problems in Logistics Area of analysis Transport High costs of transport per ton of goods Big level of waste and breakage in transport Possible reasonsSuspected problems Analysis to be performed Low usage of resources
  27. 27. 27 Then for those problems we try to guess the reasons causing them Area of analysis Transport High costs of transport per ton of goods Big level of waste and breakage in transport Possible reasonsSuspected problems Analysis to be performed Badly designed routes Too big fuel usage No shipments on the way back Low usage of resources Badly designed method of packaging which makes the product prone to damage Speed not adjusted to the product Badly organized work and schedule of deliveries Limitation on delivery time of finished goods
  28. 28. 28 Finally we come up with analyzes we have to carry to prove or disprove these hypotheses (that certain reason is causing certain problem Area of analysis Transport High costs of transport per ton of goods Big level of waste and breakage in transport Possible reasonsSuspected problems Analysis to be performed Analysis of correlation between type of packaging and percentage of damaged Analysis of time spent on the way and kilometers covered in that time Analysis of designed routes, their length and the influence of possible changes Analysis of fuel usage and kilometers covered by vehicles Analysis of load carried on the way back Badly designed routes Too big fuel usage No shipments on the way back Low usage of resources Badly designed method of packaging which makes the product prone to damage Speed not adjusted to the product Badly organized work and schedule of deliveries Limitation on delivery time of finished goods Analysis of level of overtime, daily organization of drivers work Analysis of Clients’ preferences on delivery time
  29. 29. 29 Low hanging fruit
  30. 30. 30 We are taught to look for challenges. In real life it makes more sense to start with the simple things that give you big impact
  31. 31. 31 Get the low hanging fruits first. By low hanging fruits we mean things with big impact and easy to accomplish. You should first concentrate on low hanging fruits and only after that go for other priorities
  32. 32. 32 Resources needed Impact SmallBig High Low ▪ Things with big impact that require little work 1 How to find low hanging fruits? ▪ Easy but with low impact 3 ▪ Things with big impact yet expensive, time consuming 2 No Low hanging fruits
  33. 33. 33 ▪ Office hours 1 Example of low hanging fruits for StartupAkademia 2 4 3 ▪ Blog posts ▪ Slideshare presentation Impact (traffic generated to the web) High Low Resources needed (money + time) SmallBig ▪ Udemy Course ▪ Sniply ▪ Youtube ▪ Events ▪ Twitter ▪ Additional resources Low hanging fruits
  34. 34. 34 Priorities
  35. 35. 35 There are 4 types of priorities you can use ▪ FCFS – First Come First Served (FIFO) ▪ LCFS – Last Come First (LIFO) Served ▪ Due Date ▪ SOT – Shortest Operating Time
  36. 36. 36 Depending on the rules you use you will do differen things first FCFS ▪ Write 1 blog post ▪ Analyze sales results ▪ Send email ▪ Read 4 articles ▪ Pay for cable TV Task When it came Deadline Time needed for completion In minutes ▪ 01.04 ▪ 01.04 ▪ 02.04 ▪ 02.04 ▪ 03.04 ▪ 10.04 ▪ 04.04 ▪ 09.04 ▪ 11.04 ▪ 04.04 ▪ 120 ▪ 30 ▪ 2 ▪ 25 ▪ 4 1 2 3 4 5 LCFS 5 4 3 2 1 Deadline 4 1 3 5 2 SOT 5 4 1 3 2
  37. 37. 37 I use apply a mixture of SOT and Deadlines as it gives biggest impact fast especially in a team set-up ▪ Write 1 blog post ▪ Analyze sales results ▪ Send email ▪ Read 4 articles ▪ Pay for cable TV Task When it came Deadline Time needed for completion In minutes ▪ 01.04 ▪ 01.04 ▪ 02.04 ▪ 02.04 ▪ 03.04 ▪ 10.04 ▪ 04.04 ▪ 09.04 ▪ 11.04 ▪ 04.04 ▪ 120 ▪ 30 ▪ 2 ▪ 25 ▪ 4 Deadline 4 1 3 5 2 SOT 5 4 1 3 2
  38. 38. 38 Benchmarks
  39. 39. 39 Without some point of reference you will not know whether you are tall or short
  40. 40. 40 There are 2 types of benchmarks Internal External ▪ Based on previous execution ▪ Extremely comparable ▪ Very reliable ▪ Detailed – can be put for each and every activity ▪ Based on some external source (i.e. reports) ▪ Not that easily comparable ▪ They to be treated with caution ▪ Only for chosen amount of activities ▪ Can give you food for drastic improvements - by analyzing them you can find totally different method of working
  41. 41. 41 By comparing your results and benchmarks you can decide what to improve, work on Internal ▪ Salary ▪ Speed of typing ▪ Speed of analyzing Excel Area Unit Current result ▪ K USD ▪ words/ minute ▪ minute ▪ 5 ▪ 40 ▪ 15 4 39 10 External 7 80 12 ▪ Your salary went up in comparison with your previous one but you are still below the market ▪ Your typing speed has improved slightly yet you are far below the speed achieved by others ▪ You not only improved your speed of analyzing but also are better than others ▪ Makes sense to teach others how to do it Conclusions
  42. 42. 42 Applying 80/20 rule in practice
  43. 43. 43 80/20 – Pareto Principal
  44. 44. 44 What does 80/20 mean in practice ▪ Concentrate only on the big items ▪ Concentrate on the big customers ▪ Analyze the most typical cases ▪ Concentrate on the most frequently occurring problems ▪ Analyze problems with big impact ▪ Your analyses should have only 20% of the variable that generate 80% of the impact ▪ Start with subjects where you see the biggest difference between actual results and benchmarks
  45. 45. 45 Here are 3 examples of using 80/20 rules ▪ Learning Visual Basic for Excel ▪ Checking competitors ▪ Salsa course Area ▪ Learn only the 5 most used items that will take only 20% of full course and will be used by in you in 80% cases ▪ You check only 20% of competitors that sales add-up to 80% of the market ▪ Go through 20% of the course to learn the moves and the figures used by 80% of people Description
  46. 46. 46 More details and additional resources you will see in our on- line course on how to be productive Click to check my course Management Consulting Productivity Hacks $45 $15
  47. 47. 47 How you can work faster
  48. 48. 48 Create to-do lists
  49. 49. 49 To do list will help you to arrange you work into smaller actionable pieces
  50. 50. 50 There are few rules that will help you write down the to-do list and make the best out of them Put everything on a list Use multiple lists Specific actionable things Divided jobs into small tasks Set pace Use calendar as one of the lists Go through lists regularly Use tools to track tasks execution Put project as to-do list
  51. 51. 51 You can use different type of list of to-dos Next Actions Lists by status – by Getting Things Done Projects Waiting for Someday Maybe Home Lists by place– by Getting Things Done Work On-line Calendar Phone To be done Lists by status Currently Doing Done Topic Research Lists by production stages – example of udemy course Presentation Script Recording Post- production Upload
  52. 52. 52 I use 4 types of lists To be done Managing me Expecting from others Recurring items Managing personal team Master list Monika Lidia Michael Lisa Project done for customers Project A Project B Project C Project D Supervising startups Startup A Startup B Startup C Startup D
  53. 53. 53 Set SMART goals
  54. 54. 54 S M A R T Specific – target a specific area for improvement Measurable – it has to be quantifiable; you have to have a way of measuring it Assignable – it says who will do it Realistic – it can be delivered Time-related – it says when it has do be delivered / by which dates The SMAR formula translates to 5 rules you should use when defining the goals
  55. 55. 55 Goals for ordinary tasks Goals for skills ▪ Avoid vague tasks ▪ Always for projects set deliverable, date and responsible person ▪ Merge the task with the goal on the to-do list and set the right pace to a achieve the goal within the defined time ▪ Set goals for improving your skills ▪ Set goals for learning new things ▪ Set goals for making the repetitive things faster and better SMART goals should be set for the task but also for skills
  56. 56. 56 Imagine that you want to write a book. Let’s translate it into task with SMART goals Imagine that you want to write a book Define the size of the book and deadline Divided into small tasks Make the tasks SMART Set the pace and execute
  57. 57. 57 You first have to define the size of the book and the deadline by which it has to be written Imagine that you want to write a book Define the size of the book and deadline Divided into small tasks Make the tasks SMART Set the pace and execute ▪ 200 pages ▪ 1 page = 800 characters ▪ Time= 1 year
  58. 58. 58 Once you have the size and deadline divide it into small tasks. In our case it will be writing pages Imagine that you want to write a book Define the size of the book and deadline Divided into small tasks Make the tasks SMART Set the pace and execute ▪ 200 pages ▪ 1 page = 800 characters ▪ Time= 1 year ▪ Write pages
  59. 59. 59 Obviously “writing pages”is not SMART so you have to be more specific. In our case we set the goal as 1 page per day Imagine that you want to write a book Define the size of the book and deadline Divided into small tasks Make the tasks SMART Set the pace and execute ▪ 200 pages ▪ 1 page = 800 characters ▪ Time= 1 year ▪ Write pages ▪ Write 1 page every day
  60. 60. 60 Finally, you have to have a way of controlling the pace and reacting. In our case once a week you make a summary. If you are below the target you have to speed up or allocate more resources Imagine that you want to write a book Define the size of the book and deadline Divided into small tasks Make the tasks SMART Set the pace and execute ▪ 200 pages ▪ 1 page = 800 characters ▪ Time= 1 year ▪ Write pages ▪ Write 1 page every day ▪ Measure every week completion rate against the target (1 page/day=7 pages/week) ▪ If necessary act to keep the pace
  61. 61. 61 By comparing your results and benchmarks you can decide what to improve, work on Internal ▪ Learn Spanish ▪ Speed of typing Area Unit Current result ▪ Level ▪ words/ minute ▪ 0 ▪ 40 n/a 39 External Intermediate 80 ▪ Sing-in the course ▪ Listen to Spanish TV 30 minutes every day ▪ Enroll into a on-line course ▪ Devote 15 minutes every day to training Target ▪ Intermediate in 2 years ▪ Achieve 60 words/minute In 3 months Actions
  62. 62. 62 Map your skills, experience, skills and set goals where you want to be ▪ Sales projects Experience ▪ 1 # of projects Current Target ▪ 4 Industry Current Target ▪ Marketing projects ▪ 2 ▪ 6 ▪ Supply chain projects ▪ 2 ▪ 2 ▪ Production projects ▪ 3 ▪ 3 ▪ HR projects ▪ 0 ▪ 1 ▪ Excel Skills Lowest Level Highest level ▪ Negotiation ▪ English ▪ Optimizing production ▪ Setting up on-line marketing campaigns Current Target
  63. 63. 63 Use the right tools and master them
  64. 64. 64 People tend to use old tools there are used to as they have no incentive to work better and faster. You can drastically improve the efficiency by identifying the right tools
  65. 65. 65 Let’s have a look at tools used in consulting
  66. 66. 66 First you list most often activites Define what you do most often Find tools Master the tools you are using Constantly improve and test new ones ▪ Analyze ▪ Present ▪ Collect knowledge ▪ Manage projects and teams ▪ Sell
  67. 67. 67 Then you list the tools currently used Define what you do most often Find tools Master the tools you are using Constantly improve and test new ones ▪ Analyze ▪ Excel ▪ Present ▪ Power Point ▪ Collect knowledge ▪ Database on Google Sheet with links ▪ Manage projects and teams ▪ Database on Google Sheet ▪ Sell ▪ Direct sales and content marketing on events
  68. 68. 68 As a 3rd step you try to device ways to improve your usage of those tools Define what you do most often Find tools Master the tools you are using Constantly improve and test new ones ▪ Analyze ▪ Excel ▪ Learn advanced formulas , formats and VBA, shortcuts ▪ Present ▪ Power Point ▪ Learn animation, using of templates, shortcuts ▪ Collect knowledge ▪ Database on Google Sheet with links ▪ Use advanced function and templates, use zapier for partial automation ▪ Manage projects and teams ▪ Database on Google Sheet ▪ Learn advanced features of Google Sheet that will enable you managing the project or team ▪ Sell ▪ Direct sales and content marketing on events ▪ Increases your network (LinkedIn) and start propagating content marketing on different platforms (Guest blogging, reports distributed to customers, Slideshare)
  69. 69. 69 Finally you can look for much better options. Define what you do most often Find tools Master the tools you are using Constantly improve and test new ones ▪ Analyze ▪ Excel ▪ Learn advanced formulas , formats and VBA, shortcuts ▪ Test Access, SPSS, R for specific purposes ▪ Present ▪ Power Point ▪ Learn animation, using of templates, shortcuts ▪ Test Prezio, Powtoon, Explain everything for this purpose ▪ Collect knowledge ▪ Database on Google Sheet with links ▪ Use advanced function and templates, use zapier for partial automation ▪ Test Get Pocket, Evernote ▪ Manage projects and teams ▪ Database on Google Sheet ▪ Learn advanced features of Google Sheet that will enable you managing the project or team ▪ Test Asana, Leankit, Smartsheet, Trelllo, Nobe ▪ Sell ▪ Direct sales and content marketing on events ▪ Increases your network (LinkedIn) and start propagating content marketing on different platforms (Guest blogging, reports distributed to customers, Slideshare) ▪ Use Linkedin Premium, Buffer, start microblogging on Twitter, Google+ ▪ Get cloes.io for cold calling and delegate it partially to other team members
  70. 70. 70 You have to find tools for the most often done activities Define what you do most often Find tools Master the tools you are using Constantly improve and test new ones ▪ Analyze ▪ Excel ▪ Learn advanced formulas , formats and VBA, shortcuts ▪ Test Access, SPSS, R for specific purposes ▪ Present ▪ Power Point ▪ Learn animation, using of templates, shortcuts ▪ Test Prezio, Powtoon, Explain everything for this purpose ▪ Collect knowledge ▪ Database on Google Sheet with links ▪ Use advanced function and templates, use zapier for partial automation ▪ Test Get Pocket, Evernote ▪ Manage projects and teams ▪ Database on Google Sheet ▪ Learn advanced features of Google Sheet that will enable you managing the project or team ▪ Test Asana, Leankit, Smartsheet, Trelllo, Nobe ▪ Sell ▪ Direct sales and content marketing on events ▪ Increases your network (LinkedIn) and start propagating content marketing on different platforms (Guest blogging, reports distributed to customers, Slideshare) ▪ Use Linkedin Premium, Buffer, start microblogging on Twitter, Google+ ▪ Get cloes.io for cold calling and delegate it partially to other team members
  71. 71. 71 Thanks to this exercise you can speed up main activities 2-10x. We start with mastering current tools as it is easy to ask people to improve at things they know then to make them learn new tools
  72. 72. 72 List of the most important tools for consultant Analyze Present Sales & Marketing Knowledge Management Market research Team management
  73. 73. 73 Now let’s have a look at a different, yet real example of engineers preparing drawing of aluminum constructions for their customers
  74. 74. 74 Below example of engineers in a support department that have to draw designs for clients in Autocad. They draw aluminum profiles but unfortunately line by line Define what you do most often Find tools Master the tools you are using Constantly improve and test new ones ▪ Prepare projects for clients ▪ AutoCad
  75. 75. 75 You can significantly improve by introducing libraries of ready made elements and storing previous projects in standardized form Define what you do most often Find tools Master the tools you are using Constantly improve and test new ones ▪ Prepare projects for clients ▪ AutoCad ▪ Create libraries ▪ Store previous projects
  76. 76. 76 On top of that you can buy add-on for Autocad that reduces drastically the time needed for drawing Define what you do most often Find tools Master the tools you are using Constantly improve and test new ones ▪ Prepare projects for clients ▪ AutoCad ▪ Create libraries ▪ Store previous projects ▪ Buy add-on Autocad that changes the drawing methods
  77. 77. 77 As you can see by going the full way you are able to improve 8x and do in 2 hours what used to take you 16 hours. For a department of 4 people basically it meant that now they could do the job of 32 qualified engineers Define what you do most often Find tools Master the tools you are using Constantly improve and test new ones ▪ Prepare projects for clients ▪ AutoCad ▪ Create libraries ▪ Store previous projects ▪ Buy add-on Autocad that changes the drawing methods ▪ Time in hours needed for 1 project ▪ 16 hours ▪ 10 hours ▪ 2 hours
  78. 78. 78 More details and additional resources go to my on-line course on how to be productive Click to check my course Management Consulting Productivity Hacks $45 $15
  79. 79. 79 Removing bottlenecks
  80. 80. 80 Bottlenecks are dangerous as their hurt the efficiency of the whole system. To improve the wholes system you have to improve first bottlenecks
  81. 81. 81 Bottleneck is always at the place where you have the lowest capacity. Have a look at 3 examples below Example 1 7 5 7 Example 2 5 10 20 Example 3 5 5 3 x Stage capacity x Bottleneck
  82. 82. 82 The are 4 rules that you should follow when it comes to bottlenecks ▪ Identify what is the bottleneck ▪ Increase its throughput by lowering the time needed for everything that goes through the bottleneck ▪ Add new resources to bottleneck ▪ Adjust everything to the bottleneck – so it works at the same pace
  83. 83. 83 Imagine that you are working in a company working in a content marketing. Your bottleneck is writing posts Research topics for a post Write a post Create illustration Edit and modify post, add illustration and schedule 20 5 7 10 # of post that can be done in a week by 1 person xx
  84. 84. 84 If you Speed up the writing process (faster typing, better tools, shortcuts for the most popular words) you boost capacity to 7 and Creation of illustration becomes your bottleneck Research topics for a post Write a post Create illustration Edit and modify post, add illustration and schedule 20 5 7 10 # of post that can be done in a week by 1 person ▪ Speed up the writing process (faster typing, better tools, shortcuts for the most popular words) xx 20 8 7 10
  85. 85. 85 Finally if you make the researcher do also par time writing and making illustration you boos capacity even further to 9 post per week. Writing post again becomes bottleneck. But with the same people you produce almost 2x Research topics for a post Write a post Create illustration Edit and modify post, add illustration and schedule 20 5 7 10 # of post that can be done in a week by 1 person ▪ Speed up the writing process (faster typing, better tools, shortcuts for the most popular words) xx 20 8 7 10 10 9 10 10 ▪ Make the researcher do also par time writing and making illustration
  86. 86. 86 Avoid multitasking
  87. 87. 87 What is the role of business analyst? Pure evilMultitasking ▪When you try to multitask you get deconcentrated ▪You waste time on switching between tasks ▪It lowers actually your IQ ▪You can’t achieve the flow =
  88. 88. 88 If you want to avoid multitasking follow the following rules Check email only on set intervals Switch off the phone / fb/ others Block time for certain tasks Follow to-do list using the priorities 1 task at a time Make regular breaks Make the tasks small enough Test how music works with you
  89. 89. 89 Avoid emails
  90. 90. 90 Emails are causing a chaos due to its iterative nature
  91. 91. 91 If you want to avoid emails follow the following rules Write in clear and simple manner Don’t respond with “thank you” Send always to the minimal # of people Send always to the person that can react Use Google Sheet / Asana for projects Use Slack for small things Forbid emails Walk Kill the reasons for emails Kill the iteration
  92. 92. 92 Create universal structure of folders
  93. 93. 93 In most cases in consulting you will be doing a lot of different project and you may loose a track of what you have done Supply chain General audit Cost cutting Sales Force Management Marketing improvement Cost cutting Supply chain Supply chain Sales Force Management Sales Force Management Marketing improvement General audit Supply chain ▪ After a few project you will be lost – you will not remember what was done on what project ▪ Consulting and many services are bout managing knowledge ▪ If you organize the knowledge properly you can reuse it on other projects ▪ Therefore create universal structure of folders
  94. 94. 94 Below an example of structure used for consulting project Customer folder Project A folder Admin Legal PBC Area A Area B Deliverables
  95. 95. 95 Talk and write simple, in a clear and coherent way
  96. 96. 96 Writing in a simple way is about following certain simple rules Make it short and sweet Structure Tell in a pure and clear way what you want Use bullet points Kill adjectives and adverbs Use the right format Use the pyramid principle Send it to the right person Start from general and then go to specific Conclusion first
  97. 97. 97 Messaging – example how NOT to write it Dear Kate You probably remember that last week, somewhere around afternoon, when I was strolling with my boyfriend in this humid day, we came across you and then when I was talking on the phone you my back turned to you, you kissed my boyfriend on the lips. Moreover, I day before that incident, when you were at my mom’s place at dinner you said that it was the worst meal you had ever had. On top of that, when my cat tried to approach you gently you kicked him and told him that next time you would bring your big, scary dog. Taking everything mentioned above, I must say admit that I cannot me your friend any longer. In fact it seems that I do not like you anymore. Best regards Mary
  98. 98. 98 Messaging – example how to write it Dear Kate I do not like you and I don not wish to see you anymore because: 1. You were hitting on my boyfriend 2. You insulted my mother 3. You hurt my cat Mary
  99. 99. 99 Standardize everything
  100. 100. 100 Why it makes sense to standardize? Easy to go through what you have done so far You can reuse your products Less versions to manage Brain works faster with standards You can find faster what you need
  101. 101. 101 How to decide whether to standardize Used by manyOften used Last for longer time Standardize
  102. 102. 102 Below you will find examples of things standardized in consulting and a typical company Folder structure Consulting Naming of files Proposals to customers Typical company Agreements Deliverables Analyses Main processes Internal documents External documents Main process Dress code Language of communication
  103. 103. 103 There are some rules for standardizing that you should follow Use few standards Internal standards higher than external Round up to closes standard Communicate standards Teach standards
  104. 104. 104 Standardization – examples of rules for Excel
  105. 105. 105 What rules should be used when building analysis in Excel Usage of colors Consistency between sheets Pyramid principle 1-source rule Repetition of variables Shortcuts No mouse Description Data source Master sheet
  106. 106. 106 The most useful functions Basic functions Financial / Mathematical Others ▪ SUMIF / SUMIFS ▪ COUNTIF / COUNTIFS ▪ HLOOKUP ▪ VLOOKUP ▪ MATCH ▪ SUMPRODUCT ▪ IF ▪ AND / OR ▪ IFERROR ▪ AVERAGEIF ▪ LEFT / RIGHT / MID ▪ FIND ▪ CONCATENATE ▪ YEAR / MONTH / DAY ▪ ROUND / ROUNDUP / ROUNDDOWN ▪ TODAY ▪ VALUE ▪ WEEKDAY ▪ RAND / RANDBETWEEN ▪ MOD ▪ NPV ▪ IRR ▪ ABS ▪ MAX / MIN ▪ CORREL ▪ Pivot ▪ Slicer ▪ Relative addresses ▪ Formats ▪ Hyperlink ▪ Remove Duplicates ▪ Filters ▪ Sorting ▪ Data Validation ▪ Trace Dependents / Precedent ▪ Analysis Tool Pack
  107. 107. 107 Create templates
  108. 108. 108 Templates can save you a lot of time. They are area almost ready made pieces of work that need some changes to be used. It is great for repetitive work
  109. 109. 109 How to decide whether to make templates Often UsedCan be reused Time-consuming Template
  110. 110. 110 Define what you should create templates for. In consulting we use a lot of templates to make the repetitive work less time consuming Sales presentation Consulting Emails Data request Project Time sheets Proposal Agreement Folder structure Deliverable presentation Dimensions ▪ For every product, branch ▪ All standard emails: about meetings, data request, workshop, sales emails, thank you email ▪ For every product (project type) and branch – Word ▪ For every product (project type) – Word ▪ For every product (project type) – Word ▪ For every product (project type) and branch in Excel ▪ Library of standard slides with typical analyses to choose from ▪ For every product (project type) and branch – Excel
  111. 111. 111 Create modules
  112. 112. 112 Modules is something that helps you go beyond templates and used them in a situation that seem not easy to be standardized
  113. 113. 113 Creating modules enables you to turn even things that Sales presentation About the company (history, experience, offices) Problem description Proposed solution Pricing Team Contact Details Rather standard Unique
  114. 114. 114 For more hacks and details go to my on-line course Click to check my course Management Consulting Productivity Hacks $45 $15
  115. 115. 115 Shelf management
  116. 116. 116 Consulting is a place where the work is very volatile – one day you work 15 hours and next day you have nothing to do. What you want to do is use the time of low activity to somehow prepare yourself and absorb periods of high activity 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
  117. 117. 117 If you have such a volatile work, you should create a shelf of tasks to be done once you are free. This to-dos should be properly selected and structured and can have the form of a Kanban
  118. 118. 118 Below you have an example of defining of to-dos for the Kanban shelf Product development Read articles Read 5 articles Read 5 articles Read 5 articles Read 5 articles Read book Read 50 pages of 1 book Read 50 pages of 1 book Read 50 pages of 1 book Product proposal Draft in pencil Draft in PP Fill in 5 slides Fill in 5 slides
  119. 119. 119 Tasks from the Product development exercise you put into the Kanban Education Product development Sales
  120. 120. 120 There are number of things that you can put on the shelf Learning new tools Learning new skills Improving skills Project preparation Knowledge base preparation Training preparation Conduct training (esp. lesson learnt) Business development Template preparation Product Development
  121. 121. 121 Avoid iteration
  122. 122. 122 As you can see in the example of email exchange iteration is one of the worst things that absorbs too much time and prolongs all activities
  123. 123. 123 There are number of things causing iteration Emails Organizational structure & number of people You don’t know people Reaction time Lack of clear priorities Formats of communications Lack of sense of urgency Vacations and travels No data / No analysis
  124. 124. 124 Therefore makes sense to take actions and kill iteration Avoid emails Prepare ahead Decision sessions Create rules of behavior Delegate things down the command chain Simplify organizational structure
  125. 125. 125 Decision session how it can look like? Shorter reaction time Huge time savings Less noise (emails) and interactions No effort to coordinate Strengthen the team ….. Get into one room Do regularly Take notes Make decision Come prepared Be brutally straightforward Why it makes sense? Rules:
  126. 126. 126 Guess and prepare ahead
  127. 127. 127 If you prepare ahead you can save a lot of time on the project. On most project data collection starts at the beginning of the project which is actually 2-3 months too late ▪ Project Start Task 1 ▪ Data Gathering ▪ Analysis ▪ Presentation & Discussion ▪ End of the project 2 3 4 5 6 7 ▪ Project Start Task 1 ▪ Data Gathering ▪ Analysis ▪ Presentation & Discussion ▪ End of the project 2 3 4 5 6 7
  128. 128. 128 Guess and prepare ahead Tools Aim Time Source of information • Excel • Structure your problem • Specify analyses to be performed • A week or two before the start of the project. • Should take up to 4-8 hours • Your own mind • Internet • Specialized literature • Word • Put into words your information needs • After preparing issue tree. If possible at least a week before arriving at the clients premises. • Issue tree • Former projects • Word / Excel • Create formats in Excel to gather data as raw as possible • After preparing issue tree and list of questions for the client. If possible at least a week before arriving at the clients premises. • Issue tree End product • Issue tree • List of PBC (documents to be Prepared By Client) • Formats and manual for filling them in Guess what the hell is the problem? Prepare a list of questions for the Client Prepare Excel sheets for data input
  129. 129. 129 Get rid of unused things
  130. 130. 130 Why it makes sense to get rid of unused things? Slows down Takes the place that can be used by good things Mental pressure Distracts you You lose track Costs money
  131. 131. 131 Since you operate on many platforms and levels you can create multiple messes. On all of them you should introduce order and simplicity Desktop Browser Folder structure To-do list Kanban shelf House Desk Computer
  132. 132. 132 Deadlines
  133. 133. 133 Why you need deadlines? To know when it has to be done To set priorities properly To manage properly Parkinson Law To communicate with the rest To create sense of urgency
  134. 134. 134 We have 2 types of deadlines Internal External≪
  135. 135. 135 For more hacks and additional resources check my on-line course Click to check my course Management Consulting Productivity Hacks $45 $15
  136. 136. 136 Know your customers
  137. 137. 137 Who is your customer and why working for him will make you work faster Identify your customer Observe and understand Implement in your work Description • Internal • External Outcome • You know who you relate to internally and externally • Listen • See how he behaves and uses your product • Observe how he takes decisions • Observe how he sets priorities • Create in your head his decision making model • Know his pains an problems • Understand how your actions are entangled with his every day life • Insight into mechanisms • Insight into preferences and customer constraints • Use the knowledge to apply 80/20 rules • Set priorities on things that involving specific customers using the knowledge on his constraints and preferences • Doing the right things that will get effect at your customer
  138. 138. 138 Be your customer
  139. 139. 139 It makes a lot of sense to become your customer. This will help you even further understand how to communicate properly and what will give you biggest results Suffer his pains and doubts Learn competitors / Taste their solutions Get to know other customers Understand the customer language
  140. 140. 140 Master your field
  141. 141. 141 Who have to first define your field and the level of your excellence Sales Marketing Operations Programming ▪ Current level ▪ Target level
  142. 142. 142 There are number of pros and cons of becoming an expert in a relatively wide area Expert status Faster thinking You can go further within certain field No need to invent Always ahead of the rest Diminishing returns Your specialization may disappear In-box thinking Crowd effect
  143. 143. 143 Imagine that you want to become VP of sales. First you start by defining your current profile Define your current profile Define your target profile Set your SMART goal on this subject Allocate time for this or to-dos in the Kanban / shelf for future tasks VP of sales / CEO ▪ Sales ▪ Marketing ▪ Operations ▪ Finance ▪ Coding Level ▪ 1 ▪ 1 ▪ 0 ▪ 1 ▪ 0
  144. 144. 144 Afterwards you have to set your target level of things you want to concentrate on Define your current profile Define your target profile Set your SMART goal on this subject Allocate time for this or to-dos in the Kanban / shelf for future tasks VP of sales / CEO ▪ Sales ▪ Marketing ▪ Operations ▪ Finance ▪ Coding Level ▪ 1 ▪ 1 ▪ 0 ▪ 1 ▪ 0 VP of sales / CEO ▪ Sales ▪ Marketing ▪ Operations ▪ Finance ▪ Coding Level ▪ 3 ▪ 5 ▪ 2 ▪ 2 ▪ 1
  145. 145. 145 …. And you convert them into SMART goals Define your current profile Define your target profile Set your SMART goal on this subject Allocate time for this or to-dos in the Kanban / shelf for future tasks VP of sales / CEO ▪ Sales ▪ Marketing ▪ Operations ▪ Finance ▪ Coding Level ▪ 1 ▪ 1 ▪ 0 ▪ 1 ▪ 0 VP of sales / CEO ▪ Sales ▪ Marketing ▪ Operations ▪ Finance ▪ Coding Level ▪ 3 ▪ 5 ▪ 2 ▪ 2 ▪ 1 Goals for Year 1 ▪ Sales – jump by 1 level ▪ Marketing – jump by 2 levels ▪ Operations – jump by 1 level
  146. 146. 146 In last stage you convert them into tasks Define your current profile Define your target profile Set your SMART goal on this subject Allocate time for this or to-dos in the Kanban / shelf for future tasks VP of sales / CEO ▪ Sales ▪ Marketing ▪ Operations ▪ Finance ▪ Coding Level ▪ 1 ▪ 1 ▪ 0 ▪ 1 ▪ 0 VP of sales / CEO ▪ Sales ▪ Marketing ▪ Operations ▪ Finance ▪ Coding Level ▪ 3 ▪ 5 ▪ 2 ▪ 2 ▪ 1 Goals for Year 1 ▪ Sales – jump by 1 level ▪ Marketing – jump by 2 levels ▪ Operations – jump by 1 level Allocate time ▪ Every Friday or ▪ 1 month devoted to studying Example of to-dos ▪ SALES: Reading 2 articles on cold-calling ▪ SALES: Work on 1 day in a call center ▪ SALES: Work on 1 hour every day in a customer service ▪ MARKETING: Reading 2 articles on content marketing ▪ MARKETING: Reading 2 articles on marketing automation ▪ MARKETING: Learn to use Buffer ▪ MARKETING: Learn to use Buzzsumo ▪ OPERATIONS: Read 50 pages of Goal (book on theory of constraints) ▪ OPERATIONS: Analyze 3 processes at your company using OLE and bottleneck analysis
  147. 147. 147 1 piece flow
  148. 148. 148 Thanks to well set up process I got my tooth removed in under 20 minutes from entering the building to leaving it without the tooth in a taxi heading home Register Take picture Tooth removal Payment ▪ 2 minutes ▪ 5 minutes ▪ 5 minutes ▪ 2 minutes
  149. 149. 149 Why it make sense to use 1-piece flow Maximal Output Successes come often No work in progress Fewer chances to do something wrong Faster reaction time Brain is more likely to experience flow Less distractions Bigger order Faster you discover whether it made sense Lower waste
  150. 150. 150 As you can see one piece flow for content marketing gives you more often results than extreme batching. Yet it is not as efficient Research topics for a post Write a post Create illustration Number of posts done at the same time Edit and modify post, add illustration and schedule Outcome ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 4 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 4 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 4 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 4 days on this phase ▪ 4 post every 16 days ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 1 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 1 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 1 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 1 days on this phase ▪ 1 post every 4 days
  151. 151. 151 Smart batching
  152. 152. 152 Smart batching is a compromise between 1-piece flow and extreme batching. You get some efficiencies yet you do not do things in big batches Extreme batching 1 piece flow Smart batching
  153. 153. 153 Example of smart batching for content marketing vs extreme batching and 1 piece flow Research topics for a post Write a post Create illustration Number of posts done at the same time Edit and modify post, add illustration and schedule Outcome ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 4 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 4 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 4 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 4 days on this phase ▪ 4 post every 16 days ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 1 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 1 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 1 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 1 days on this phase ▪ 1 post every 4 days ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 2 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 2 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 2 days on this phase ▪ 1 day per post ▪ 2 days on this phase ▪ 2 post every 8 days
  154. 154. 154 Why it make sense to use smart batching Efficiency Gains Some (limited) work in progress Compromise between efficiency & stimulation Suitable for known tasks No flood of output for your customers
  155. 155. 155 How long it takes to complete 1 piece? Is it boring? What Is the set-up / switching cost high? ? High Yes Hours Weeks No Hours Weeks Low Yes Hours Weeks No Hours Weeks When it makes sense to use smart batching? Smart batching Extreme batching 1-piece flow
  156. 156. 156 Automation
  157. 157. 157 What is automation? Full automation Semi-automatic
  158. 158. 158 What is the benefit of automation Huge Time savings Some (limited) work in progress Compromise between efficiency & stimulation Suitable for known tasks No flood of output for your customers
  159. 159. 159 Examples of automation Area Basic Tool Automation ▪ Analysis ▪ Excel ▪ Access ▪ SPSS ▪ VBA ▪ Emailing ▪ Email ▪ Emailing programs with autoresponders i.e. Mailchimp, GetResponse ▪ Marketing automation solutions ▪ Pictures preparation ▪ Paint ▪ Canva and Canva for Work ▪ Content marketing ▪ Power Point ▪ Facebook / Twitter modules ▪ VBA for Power Point ▪ Buffer ▪ Zapier ▪ IFTTT
  160. 160. 160 Examples of semiautomatic solutions Manual Automatic
  161. 161. 161 Examples – marketing automation
  162. 162. 162 Examples – marketing automation
  163. 163. 163 Delegate
  164. 164. 164 There are 2 types of delegations Delegate part of the work Full outsourcing
  165. 165. 165 You have to follow some rules to make delegation successful Same standards as you Use your templates Trained by you Control tool Same philosophy of work Ordering tool Manage capacity for delegation
  166. 166. 166 Examples of delegation from management consultants - Option 1 Write in pencil presentation Template in Power Point Conduct analysis for the slides Fill in slides Person performing the task Overview and modifications Additional analyses Visual modification Final overview You 1 day sb x day Duration of task performance You 2 days You 14 days You 4 days You 1 day You 2 days You 2 days You 1 day
  167. 167. 167 Examples of delegation from management consultants - Option 2 Write in pencil presentation Template in Power Point Conduct analysis for the slides Fill in slides Person performing the task Overview and modifications Additional analyses Visual modification Final overview PM / Associate 1 day sb x day Duration of task performance Business Analyst 2 days Business Analyst 14 days Business Analyst 4 days PM / Associate 1 day Business Analyst 2 days Visual Assistant 2 days PM / Associate 1 day
  168. 168. 168 Have a look at what gives you delegating in terms of money PM / Associate 27 day Business Analyst Visual Assistant 0 days 0 days Option 1 – You do everything Option 2 – You delegate whatever you can PM / Associate 3 day Business Analyst Visual Assistant 22 days 2 days Cost of the project = 27 K Cost of the project = 10 K
  169. 169. 169 Zero defect rule
  170. 170. 170 Zero defect rule Find the error as soon as possible and eliminate it from the flow
  171. 171. 171 Examples of management consultants – where should be the checking points? Write in pencil presentation Template in Power Point Conduct analysis for the slides Fill in slides Person performing the task Overview and modifications Additional analyses Visual modification Final overview PM / Associate 1 day sb x day Duration of task performance Business Analyst 2 days Business Analyst 14 days Business Analyst 4 days PM / Associate 1 day Business Analyst 2 days Visual Assistant 2 days PM / Associate 1 day Additional checkpoints
  172. 172. 172 Poka Yoke
  173. 173. 173 Poka Yoke Example in office
  174. 174. 174 For more hacks and additional resources check my on-line course Click to check my course Management Consulting Productivity Hacks $45 $15
  175. 175. 175 Go also to the presentation showing tips how to solve management consulting cases during interview How to get into Consulting? Practical guide how to pass the Interview presentation
  176. 176. 176 You can also find useful some tips on Excel Essential Excel for Business Analysts and Consultants A practical guide presentation
  177. 177. 177 Check my presentation on on-line models to understand them properly Market research Practical guide for startups and entrepreneurs presentation
  178. 178. 178 More cases you can find in my on-line course where I show step by step how to solve cases Click to check my course How to get into consulting – Management Consulting Cases $45 $15
  179. 179. 179 Check my presentation on on-line models to understand them properly Business models Practical guide for startups and entrepreneurs presentation
  180. 180. 180 Check my presentation on financial modeling Financial modeling for Business Analyst and Consultants Step by step practical guide presentation
  181. 181. 181 Check my presentation on on-line models to understand them properly How to become world class analyst A practical guide presentation
  182. 182. 182 Check my presentation on on-line models to understand them properly How to open a successful restaurant A practical guide presentation
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