Management Consultancy for Innovation  book cover
1st Edition

Management Consultancy for Innovation

ISBN 9781138312791
Published July 30, 2019 by Routledge
254 Pages 18 B/W Illustrations

USD $48.95

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Book Description

This book provides a new perspective on innovation in consultancy firms. Focusing on how consultancy firms can innovate in the modern era, it exposes and discusses key drivers for innovation in the industry. These are broken down into 5 dimensions - or ‘Poles’ - relating to forms of capital (human capital, social capital, and three types of organizational capital) that consultancy firms can use in order to innovate, both for themselves and for their clients.

Readers of this book will not only gain insight into the "innovative consultancy" from the perspective of each of these Poles. They will also discover how consultancy firms need to find the right way of connecting these Poles together in order to produce the desired innovation. Readers will learn about the dangers of misaligning the Poles, as well as implications of innovative consultancy for ethics, academic research in the field of consultancy, and for careers. In addition to the academic literature, the book draws from real-world examples, cases and practice insights from various parts of the world.

This book will be of great use to those interested in pursuing a career in the consultancy industry, whether they are undergraduate and postgraduate Business & Management students, students not necessarily studying in Business Schools, or others seeking a career move into consultancy. It will also be valuable to seasoned consultants and managers of consultancy firms seeking new ideas on how to develop innovative capabilities in an increasingly competitive industry.

Table of Contents

List of Figures


1. Introduction

2. Pole 1: Human Capital

3. Pole 2: Social Capital

4. Pole 3: Consultant Virtualization

5. Pole 4: Disruption in the Consultancy Life-Cycle

6. Pole 5: Reflective Ability in Consultancy

7. Connecting the Poles to form the Innovative Consultancy

8. Implications of the Innovative Consultancy

9. Concluding Remarks

Appendix – Cases of Innovation in Management Consultancy



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Christopher Williams is Reader in Management at Durham University Business School, UK. His publications include academic research in a range of journals, over 25 teaching cases and the book Venturing in International Firms: Contexts and Cases in a High-Tech World (Routledge, 2018)


"This book provides well-researched, accessible and intelligent insights into the pressures on, and opportunities for, innovation in a complex and dynamic industry. These insights are supported by in-depth and multi-level international cases which will prove interesting to students, researchers and consultants themselves.", Joe O’Mahoney, Professor of Management Consultancy, Cardiff Business School, UK

"Management Consultancy for Innovation is a fascinating examination of the consultancy industry and presents a powerful agenda for the "innovative consultant" and the drivers of how consultancy firms can innovate. It is surprising that an industry worth billions of dollars, in which innovating solutions and insights to senior management problems are the core value proposition, has not received sufficiently deep investigation. Christopher Williams’ book provides a detailed and example-laden analysis of how the consultancy firm can innovate, the challenges faced and ways forward.", Mathew Hughes, Professor of Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Loughborough University, UK

"With Management Consultancy for Innovation, Christopher Williams invites the reader to stop and wonder: How much of our approach is really innovative and are we helping our clients to develop truly original ideas? By combining academic insight with examples from real life business cases, this book offers a framework and inspiration to experiment with new solutions to boost long term performance.", Sophie Loquet, Management Consultant, House of Performance, Netherlands

"Dr Chris Williams makes a welcome contribution to our understanding of the management consulting sector. This focussed illumination builds on the increasingly well charted broader landscape of consulting (organisations and practice). Chris' dual grasp of innovation and management consulting makes him ideally placed to offer insight into perspectives leading to client value plus organisational fitness and sustainability.", Dr Simon Haslam, Chair of Academic Fellows, International Council of Management Consulting Institutes