Personal Leadership Development/Consulting Methods

Learning Environment

Management consultancy is a very old profession, related to warfare, governance and politics. How do you manage larger groups of people to act coherently to achieve objectives? The maturation of the management discourse – among many other things – has resulted in a separation of owners (shareholders), stakeholders (employees, clients, other interest groups) and the upcoming and rise of the management class of organizations.

The dominant management and related Consultancy discourse is reflected in how managers usually talk together about the nature of their managerial activity, informed by their consultants. It is also reflected in the kind of organizational research that attracts funding from research bodies, the kind of papers that prestigious research journals will publish, and the kind of courses taught at business schools, in the textbooks they use and in organizational training and development activities.

Most communities of practice are also characterized by some resistance to, or criticism of, the dominant discourse. In the past decades a succession of management trends and fads have been introduced, take dominance, and then go into decline – all of it informed by influential consultants/management gurus.

Through readings, in-class activities, assignments and cases, the course explores how management consultancy influences the direction of organizations and businesses and how theoretical and societal trends influence practices in these areas. Simultaneously, students explore these themes through the completion of a management consulting project, working with a client in a professional context, that is grounded in the subject areas they are studying in other management courses. Students complete and furnish project deliverables to the client for the final course assessment. As a part of this process, students also furnish a report reflecting on the overall context of consulting practices considering their own experience with the project, as well as their personal and professional objectives. 

 

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