Just got in from teaching at a corporate client’s office.
I am currently in the process of setting the next donation lesson – but the search is taking longer than usual.
My classes have evolved from understanding Western Culture to understanding Western Corporate Culture quite markedly in the past few months. Indeed, the “Investor’s Club” series is the most popular of the donation classes. Although I wish to reestablish some balance between culture and business, I can’t help but levitate towards business-based classes.
I have an urge to do a lesson on the major consulting groups – McKinsey for example.
Because I have always wondered, what the hell does a consultant do anyway? Advise?
I can advise a baby to stop wetting himself but that doesn’t guarantee results, much less instantaneous ones. Nor does it qualify my advice as valuable. So how is it then that “advisors” can get away with charging massive fees?
As I increased the depth of my research, I scoured the web for articles old and new about the consulting profession spanning 20 years and came to the following realization: consultants are more often than not, generalists.
Business schools from Harvard to Stanford are rich fields for cream of the crop MBAs. The Big 3 consultancies – McKinsey, Booz Allen and Boston Consulting Group are all active participants in the annual rush for graduate talent. Another question – what is the value of undetaking an MBA course anyway? As I understand it, the MBA course consists of hundreds of case studies of real life business situations and students are asked to find solutions to real corporate problems. But the funny thing is…most of those MBA tutors and lecturers have little to no real experience in the business world anyway.
So then, what qualifies them to teach business leaders of the future how to solve business problems? Engineering or Computer Science, I understand. One needs tutelage in these disciplines built up from generations of cumulative engineering experience, but business?? I’m not so sure.
And then I looked back to the donation based classes and noticed something interesting. Those students of mine that have a background in business studies – be it undergraduate level or MBA, more often than not, have some of the brightest, wittiest answers to the questions I ask in class. Some really impressive answers.
Maybe that is the value of what consultancies can offer: the power of critical thinking. But then again, one does not need an MBA to be in possession of such capacity, or do they?