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Strategy: the direction and scope of the company over the long term. Structure: the basic organization of the company, its departments, reporting lines, areas of expertise and responsibility (and how they inter-relate). Systems: formal and informal procedures that govern everyday activity, covering everything from management information systems, through to the systems at the point of contact with the customer (retail systems, call center systems, online systems, etc). THE HARD S’s

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THE SOFT S’s Skills: the capabilities and competencies that exist within the company. What it does best. Shared values: the values and beliefs of the company. Ultimately they guide employees towards 'valued' behavior. Staff: the company's people resources and how the are developed, trained and motivated. Style: the leadership approach of top management and the company's overall operating approach.


MCKINSEY’S APPROACH TO PROBLEM-SOLVING The problem is not always the problem Create structure through “M.E.C.E.” Don’t reinvent the wheel Every client is unique (no cookie cutter solutions) Don’t make the facts fit your solution Make sure your solution fits your client Sometimes let the solution come to you No problem is too tough to solve

THE 80/20 RULE:

THE 80/20 RULE - 80% of an effect under study will be generated by 20 of the examples analyzed - A small fraction of elements account for a large fraction of the effect Examples: 80% of sales from 20% of sales force 80% of orders from 20% of customers


DON’T BOIL THE OCEAN Work smarter, not harder. There’s a lot of data out there relating to your problem, and a lot of analyses you could do. Ignore most of them. Lesson: be selective and don’t try to analyze everything.


FIND THE KEY DRIVERS Many factors affect business. Focus on the most important ones – the key drivers


THE ELEVATOR TEST Know your solution so thoroughly that you can explain it clearly and precisely to your client in 30 seconds. If you can do that, then you understand what you’re doing well enough to sell your solution.


PLUCK THE LOW-HANGING FRUIT Sometimes in the middle of the problem-solving process, opportunities arise to get an easy win, to make immediate improvements, even before the overall problem has been solved. Seize those opportunities! They create little victories for you and your team. They boost morale and give you added credibility by showing anybody who may be watching that you’re on the ball and mean business.


MAKE A CHART EVERY DAY During the problem-solving process, you learn something new every day. Put it down on paper. It will help you push your thinking. You may use it, or you may not, but once you have crystallized it on the page, you won’t forget it.


HIT SINGLES You can’t do everything, so don’t try. Just do what you’re supposed to do and get it right. It’s much better to get to first base consistently than to try to hit a home run – and strike out 9 times out of 10.


LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE Every now and then, take a mental step back from whatever you’re doing. Ask yourself some basic questions: How does what you’re doing solve the problems? How does it advance your thinking? Is it the most important thing you could be doing right now? If it’s not helping, why are you doing it?


JUST SAY, “I DON’T KNOW” Professional integrity is of utmost importance in consulting. One aspect of professional integrity is HONESTY – with your client, your team members, (your professor), and yourself. Honesty includes recognizing when you haven’t got a clue. Admitting that is a lot less costly than bluffing.


DON’T ACCEPT “I HAVE NO IDEA” People always have an idea if you probe just a bit. Ask a few pointed questions – you’ll be amazed at what they know. Combine that with some educated guessing, and you can be well along the road to the solution.

Strategic Problem-Solving Model:

Strategic Problem-Solving Model Data Intuition Managing Team Client Self Leadership Vision Inspiration Delegation Problem Solution Implementation Dedication Reaction Completion Iteration Business Need Competitive Organizational Financial Operational Analyzing Framing Designing Gathering Interpreting Presenting Structure Buy-in

Acme Widgets Logic Tree:

Acme Widgets Logic Tree Acme Widgets Grommets Widgets Widget Sales Revenue Expenses Thrum-mats Widget Leasing Widget Service North America Europe Asia

Issue Tree for Acme Widgets:

Issue Tree for Acme Widgets

Issue Tree for Acme Widgets with Subissues:

Issue Tree for Acme Widgets with Subissues Issue: Can we increase thrum-mat profitability with the new production process? Subissue: Will it reduce our costs? Subissue: Can our organization implement the necessary changes? Subissue: Can we maintain product quality while implementing the process? Does the process require special facilities? Does the process require special skills?

Work Plan for Issue in Acme Widgets Issue Tree:

Work Plan for Issue in Acme Widgets Issue Tree Issue/Hypothesis Analyses Data Sources End Product Responsibility Due Date Can we implement the necessary changes to the production process? Yes Does the new process require special facilities? No Technical Specifications Articles, interviews Chart Tom 3-Jun List of facilities that meet new criteria Facilities management, interviews List Tom 5-Jun If it does require special facilities, can we acquire them? Yes Map of “facilities gap” Facilities management, thrum-mat line supervisors, interviews Chart Belinda 7-Jun Source of required facilities/equipment Operations, trade publications List Belinda 7-Jun Costs to fill gaps Operations, contractors, interviews Table Belinda 10-Jun Effect on project rate of return Finance department, prior analysis Spreadsheet Terry 12-Jun

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