Disrupting Management Consulting: How Knowledge + Network is Key to Tangible Outcomes

By Andrea Hoffman, Culture Shift Labs

Some moments are uniquely transformational, and this is one of those times. Economic disruption related to the recent pandemic, social upheaval surrounding the #MeToo and Black Lives Matter movements, and a rapid transition to remote work have collectively made change an operational imperative.

Simply put, this is a moment of forced innovation, requiring businesses to rethink their methods to produce better outcomes. As a result, many companies are turning to consultants, hoping that new ideas and fresh insights can propel their businesses forward and provide a competitive advantage.

In response, major consulting firms are pursuing acquisitions to meet surging client demand and shifting expectations. Meanwhile, there is tremendous pressure to deliver real outcomes and impact as companies voraciously search for experts that operate outside of the big-box consulting firms.

In other words, the consulting space is being reimagined as companies turn to new models and existing methodologies to deliver transformational results at a critical time. This tidal wave of change is especially noteworthy when big-box consultancies don’t offer what this moment is requiring or are cost-prohibitive. Often, these models emphasize network, connecting the top diverse talent with job opportunities, making change happen in a real and meaningful way, something Culture Shift Labs knows something about.

As businesses seek to remake themselves to meet the moment, here are three consulting trends that are disrupting existing practices.

C-Suite Revitalization

If change starts at the top, then transformation has a long way to go.

Tim Ryan, the U.S. chairman and senior partner at PwC, is working to change that narrative, creating CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion, the largest CEO-driven business commitment to advance diversity and inclusion in the workplace. The commitment challenges companies to sign a pledge to pursue equity as the first step toward meaningful change, pushing organizations to revitalize their c-suite with equitable and representative leadership.

Meanwhile, Mckinsey & Company’s Black Executive Leadership Program, a training initiative for senior executives looking to attain c-suite leadership positions, is working on developing highly talented minority executives, preparing them to ascend the ranks at today’s leading companies.

Together, these demonstrate the preeminence of c-suite revitalization, recognizing talent maturation as a critical part of any diversity and inclusion priority.

Pipeline Development

For more developed companies, developing internal talent represents a path forward. Morgan Stanley’s Multicultural Innovation Lab, an in-house accelerator that promotes financial inclusion and provides access to capital for early-stage technology and technology-enabled companies, presents a different model for creating a continuous pipeline of minority talent.

In addition, Goldman Sachs’ Launch with GS program is investing $1 billion to provide capital to women, Black, Latinx, and other diverse entrepreneurs, operating under the understanding that “diverse teams drive strong returns.”

Together, these initiatives reimagine what consulting looks like by nurturing pipeline development as a repeatable, scalable process for improving holistic outcomes.

Networking & Connections

That’s why Culture Shift Labs pioneered the Knowledge + NetworkTM model, which combines our community of accomplished Black and Latino leaders across industries, including CTOs, CMOs, sales executives, technologists, health care executives, engineers, digital leaders, venture and private equity investors, inventors, accomplished entrepreneurs, pioneers and more — with their expansive extended networks.

Using insights from data analytics, surveys, assessments, and one-on-one interviews, we curate the best talent to empower organizations to achieve tangible outcomes.

Simply put, we are the relational introduction that drives results and achieves objectives.


Author Bio:

Andrea Hoffman is an advisor, dealmaker, strategist, speaker, author, and founder & CEO of the diversity and innovation management consulting firm Culture Shift Labs (CSL) and Culture Shifting Weekends (CSW). She’s the nation’s leading diversity and innovation expert and is a confidential advisor to Tech, F500s, Non-Profits, the Investor Community, CEOs, millionaires and billionaires. As the co-author of Black is the New Green: Marketing to Affluent African Americans and $50 BILLION Dollar Boss: African American Women Sharing Stories of Success in Entrepreneurship and Leadership, she has been at the forefront of, and personally dedicated, to racial equality since 1999.

CEO @ Culture Shift Labs | Growth Strategist | Biz Dev Exec | Advisor to Leaders | Author | SME: Diversity & Innovation | Serving Early Adopting Execs.