The management myth - a great rallying cry for the need for humanities and human thinking and some great context on where management consulting comes from in the first place.
Strategy as an unfolding network of associations (PDF) - kind of dense but fascinating case study of evaluating strategy within the context of culture:
The evidence from the case suggests that the concept of strategy can be reappraised. From strategy as a static set of choices made at a specific point in time to strategy as an unfolding network of people, shared experiences and artefacts that is constantly being remade.
Since strategy has almost inevitably been conceived in terms of what the leaders of an organization ‘plan’ to do in the future, strategy formation has, not surprisingly, tended to be treated as an analytic process for establishing long-range goals and action plans for an organization; that is, as one of formulation followed by implementation. As important as this emphasis may be, we mould argue that it is seriously limited, that the process needs to be viewed from a wider perspective so that the variety of ways in which strategies actually take shape can be considered. For over 10 years now, we have been researching the process of strategy formation based on the definition of strategy as ‘a pattern in a stream of decisions’
Small groups and consultancy - by the ever brilliant Matt Webb:
I don’t think strategy can be outsourced, I think it has to emerge from a company’s nature. So when strategy evolves, there has to be organisational change. When an organisation looks outside itself (for answers that should be derived from strategy) that says to me that it’s not thinking straight, that the organisation isn’t put together quite right yet. An organisation has these informal components, and cross-team small group meetings feel like a good way to weave them in.
The art of sharing - Jan Chipchase is a master at this and I can’t wait to read the full handbook but this excerpt is especially relevant for the sharing / campaign thinking I mention above.
Consultancy, Creativity and Cooking with Sunday Dinner - from the great Lindsey Slaby thinking about new ways of getting creative projects staffed, funded, connected and thought about. I love the strong emphasis on people. They are the capital at work here!
Venkatesh Rao on Q lab - Venkatesh’s new slack only! consulting project. Given my advocacy to getting into clients slack groups you can see why this resonated with me.
The Fieldguide to Independent Consulting - ok, I’m gonna sneak one of my own links in here but if you enjoyed this post you should read this little thought-starter around independent consulting.