Client Impact Story 1: In conversation with a Partner – ‘Big Four’ Consultancy Practice

PSfPS have worked with this ‘Big Four’ consulting firm since 2012, delivering Core Consulting Skills programmes for Senior Partners through to junior levels. PSfPS have also provided ongoing coaching and mentoring to the leadership team. Here’s the full story from the client’s perspective…

On the client’s position before PSfPS relationship…
Client Impact Story 1

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Our strategy consulting division was set up around 2005. While we knew a lot about the industry, we didn’t really have the right methodology and some of our products and services were quite inefficient.

We wanted to offer consultancy services more akin to the large existing global consultancy practices and we were particularly keen to start thinking in a more hypothesis-based manner.

On how the client originally chose PSfPS…

One of our alumni had recently moved to an existing PSfPS client and so had attended another programme run by PSfPS. This former employee recommended that we should speak to PSfPS as he thought the services they could offer might be interesting to us, as he knew our current circumstance and the PSfPS programmes he had attended had impressed him.

We followed his advice and in 2012, PSfPS delivered their first programme to our Junior Consultants on ‘Analytical Problem Solving’. This programme was a success so further programmes were rolled out to more Senior Managers.

However, in order to fully embed change in our group we needed further alignment from our group of partners.

So we organized a meeting between the Managing Director of PSfPS (William Johnson) and a Senior Partner. We were sufficiently impressed following this meeting that we asked William if he would work with our Senior Partner group directly.

I believe it was at this point that the relationship with PSfPS was upgraded from simply a ‘course provider’ to the role of coach, consultant and friend.

We have used PSfPS every year since to provide advice regarding our strategy and our brand.

On why they still work with PSfPS…

William [PSfPS Managing Director] is very good at challenging our Partners. PSfPS make us think differently and they provide very, very good advice.

We employ very demanding people and yet we continue to use PSfPS regularly.

They are always helpful. We definitely see them more as ‘mentors’ who do not just provide ‘a training course’.

I think it is this flexibility and client focus that shows that PSfPS really do practice what they preach.

On the measurable impact of working with PSfPS…

From a P&L point of view, we definitely see PSfPS as a long-term investment and not as a short-term cost.

We see PSfPS as crucial to building our team and shaping our culture for the long term.

I believe that PSfPS could be the best-kept secret in Professional Services. They are like a ‘Trojan Horse’ in that they have come into our organisation and had a profound impact on the way we think.

PSfPS make us challenge ourselves and they encourage us to challenge the status quo.

They have taught us the art of asking questions and they make us think.

As a firm we need to continue to develop our talent and our methodologies. We need to continue to work efficiently and with a long-term perspective. I believe that PSfPS are the perfect partner to help us achieve these long-term objectives.

Based on our experience, I would have no hesitation in recommending PSfPS to other professional services firms.

Client Impact Story 2: In conversation with a Senior Partner – Global Management Consulting Practice

PSfPS have worked with this Global Management Consulting firm for 8 years, delivering Business Development Behaviour programmes and Change Management programmes to Senior Partners and more junior consultants.

Working with PSfPS has enabled this client to convert more opportunities, kick-start their cultural and behavioural transformation programme internally and better satisfy their existing clients. Here’s the full story from the client’s perspective…

Client Impact Story 2

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Traditionally our Partners were all about ‘big numbers’ and were very much ‘project oriented’. We wanted to engage an organisation to help us move from this way of thinking to focusing on relationships and the right behaviours, both internally and with clients.

The key was to work with someone who could help us change the ‘attitude’ of our organisation.

Our Senior Vice President at this time was referred by a mutual contact to speak to William Johnson. We have now been working with William and his colleagues for 8 years.

Initially we started by putting 120 of our Partners and Senior Managers through a change management programme. Our thinking was that our Partners are our leaders and they set the stage. If we didn’t start with our Partners, then there would be no acceptance for change.

We then started asking ourselves, should change really come from the top? Should it really be only the Partners that set the stage? Perhaps change would be easier to start at a more junior level amongst those who are less set in their ways?

We found that junior managers were keen to change and were actively questioning the behaviours of their senior colleagues. We therefore decided to start a behavioural change programme for more junior managers as well.

There have been three main impacts of working with PSfPS.

The first was a realisation and awareness that “Wow” there is another way to go. The programmes have provided some fresh air. We realised that we can build trust, have higher levels of engagement with our clients and become thought leaders. We were not doing this as well before.

The second impact was that we were able to close more business opportunities. During our business development programmes we use real opportunities, not case studies. This enables us to practice our new skills on real client opportunities and we are then able to track these opportunities after the programme and gain some metrics to report success back.

Finally, by putting Partners and Managers through the PSfPS programmes, we have been able to kick off our cultural and behavioural transformation programme internally. Change is a continuous long-term process and PSfPS have helped us to start this journey.

In the future we hope to continue encouraging behavioural change by creating more programmes with PSfPS especially for analyst and junior levels. We are keen to start awareness of the right behaviours at an earlier stage as we think it is easier to change the behaviours of younger generations than older.

I would have no hesitation recommending PSfPS to other professional services firms.

Impact Story 3: In conversation with a Director – Global IT and Management Consulting Firm

We are a global IT and management consulting firm and we originally approached PSfPS in order to support our organisation in its objective of transitioning from an IT services provider through to a wider strategic consulting offering.

PSfPS designed and delivered a bespoke programme for our company Directors and Senior Principals. When working with PSfPS, the key aim was to create a standardised approach to strategic problem solving and our business development efforts. We also wanted to develop strategies that would specifically address our existing clients’ pre-conceptions of our current brand image we were clear that we wanted to further empower our consultants to become ambassadors of the firm.

The development programmes and subsequent methodologies have now been rolled out globally throughout the organisation and we have seen tangible results with regards to the different types of project won.

As a firm we have made significant strides towards achieving our objective of moving to a wider strategic consulting offering.

Furthermore, within the first 12 months of the commencement of our relationship with PSfPS we won a significant contract with a large international firm. This came from using two concepts specifically learned in the PSfPS programme – ‘Building your business’.