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customer buyingBusinesses are getting increasingly complex and so are customers’ expectations.  Digital organizations are digitizing their critical Customer Journeys at scale to outperform competition.  These organizations are using Digitization to create streamlined journeys, which result in more agile IT units, quick delivery of new products, and improved Customer Experiences and Engagement.

But before embarking on digitization and streamlining Customer Journeys, organizations need to transform their products, processes, legacy systems and technology, and culture to become truly digital businesses.

Streamlining multiple Customer Journeys concurrently requires integration of existing systems, building new capabilities, and deploying existing competences in a different way.  Specifically, it entails embracing the following 5-phase Omni-channel Customer Journey Design approach that is critical for improving Customer Experiences and accomplishing higher Customer Engagement:

  1. Develop Enterprise Customer Experience Story
  2. Prioritize Technology Transformation Projects
  3. Develop a Flexible Ecosystem of Technologies and Platforms
  4. Adapt Principles of Strong, Agile, and Lean
  5. Be Adaptive in Performance Management

Now, let’s talk about the first 3 phases of the Omni-channel Customer Journey Design approach.

Phase 1 – Develop Enterprise Customer Experience Story

Creating a Customer Experience Story calls for setting up a Customer Experience team.  The Customer Experience team begins by identifying the critical factors and main concerns in their customer relationships.  Around these themes, they, then, carefully outline the experiences customers may come across during each and every interaction they have with the company in the form of a story.  The Enterprise Customer Experience Story is unique to every company and provides a summary of the strategy, brand, and positioning in workable terms.

Next, the team identifies the journeys that are able to effectively deliver the factors and features critical for the customers utilizing digitization.  Each journey should be critically analyzed to assess its significance, cost advantages associated with scaling it, the governance and technical impediments, and the availability of adequate financial and leadership resources to manage it.  Thorough analysis of Customer Journeys yields a plan of action that aids in creating prioritized journeys.

Phase 2 – Prioritize Technology Transformation Projects

IT Transformation is typically the most challenging and resource hungry among other change initiatives.  For instance, designing a mobile app is simple, however, it’s the linkage of the app to all the channels customers use and its integration with the back-end systems that is complicated.

To undertake Digitization, companies should avoid digitizing each journey separately—as it fosters internal silos—and investing heavily in Internet or mobile-channel IT.  A better approach for the organizations is to rather prioritize the IT initiatives to enable smooth transformation of IT architecture with the addition of more customer journeys.  Standard IT components are reusable across different journeys.

Phase 3 – Develop a Flexible Ecosystem of Technologies and Platforms

An important consideration for digitizing core journeys and scaling digitization is to link your IT systems with the technologies and platforms working outside the firm.  These external systems provide the organization several advantages, including quick access to new customers, data pools, and capabilities.

Next-generation integration architecture should be designed in such a way that it should support open standards, dynamic interaction models, and curtail security threats.  Progress in cloud computing and technology infrastructure has made quick and easy access, management, and operations of infrastructure resources possible—including networks, servers, databases, programs, and services.  The skills needed to manage these technology ecosystems include DevOps experts to supervise integration of development and operations, enterprise architects, cloud engineers to manage software and cloud-computing, data scientists, and automation engineers.

Interested in learning more about the other key phases of the Customer Journey Design approach?  You can download an editable PowerPoint on Omni-channel Customer Journey here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

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Going into a Merger and Acquisition (M&A) is never an easy task. The process of M&A is like trying to complete a large puzzle when your right Post Merger Integration Primer Pic2hand and your left hand have never worked together. In fact, Mergers and Acquisitions revolve around a plethora of moving parts. Going into this direction can be complicated. Suddenly, there are two companies and additional stakeholders that now need to fairly and seamlessly work and communicate together in order to bring the deal to completion.

But what happens after the deal has seemingly crossed the finish line. When this happens, there is the Post Merger Integration or M&A Integration. After the financial transaction, Post-merger Integration (PMI) is the process of bringing 2 or more companies together with the aim of maximizing synergies to ensure that the deal lives up to its predicted value. However, easy as it may seem, there are problems in Mergers and Acquisitions that can often cause deals to fail. Companies do not want a deal that only looks good on paper or results in a semi-integrated company.

To be able to live up to predicted value, a Post-merger Integration Planning must start right at the beginning of the deal.

Understanding Post-merger Integration

Post-merger Integration (PMI) or M&A Integration is the process of bringing 2 or more companies together.
It is what happens after the deal has crossed the finish line. In the PMI, our objective is to maximize synergies to ensure that the deal lives up to its predicted value.

In starting the PMI, Post-merger Planning should be done at the beginning of the deal and must be established before the deal closes. Any problems that may arise in Mergers and Acquisitions must be dealt with immediately since failure to properly address them can cause deals to fail or unable to extract true value from deals.

The 4 Types of Post Acquisition Integration

It helps a lot if we have a good understanding of the different types of Post Acquisition Integration to better manage deals.

Understanding the different types of Post Acquisition Integration will give the organization a better idea of what direction to take when it comes to Mergers and Acquisitions. It is best for companies to have a good hold of where they want to go and want to achieve taking into consideration current conditions and business considerations. When these are all laid out, greater are the chances that the right type of Post Acquisition Integration is undertaken.

Taking the Right Step Forward to Mergers and Acquisitions

Taking the road to Mergers and Acquisitions requires organizations to keep away from common mistakes. This is possible with the use of M&A Integrated Solutions.

The use of M&A Integrated Solutions and Post-merger Integration Tool allows organizations to increase the chance of a successful Post-merger Integration. With the use of these tools, users are enabled to plan properly from day one and the very beginning of the diligence process. Teams have access to all files and data prior to the deal closing to spot areas of concern and plan accordingly. Further, users can set cross-stream dependencies across multiple functions.

With M&A Integrated Solutions, it facilitates the use of a better process that maximizes deal value. Organizations just need to have a good understanding of the Post-merger (M & A) Integration Process to get the greatest value.

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Organizations struggle to develop a simple set of guidelines that makes it easier for employees, regardless of position or level, to be confident of PLUS decision making modeltheir decisions to meet competing standards of organizations for effective and ethical decision making.

The traditional decision making model taught in most business ethics programs is often beyond the reading comprehension of 25% of the employees’ population. Hence, an alternative model is necessary.

Employees are called upon to make decisions in the normal course of their job. Organizations cannot function effectively if employees are not empowered to make decisions consistent with their positions and responsibilities.

Further, the decision maker has to be confident in the soundness of his decisions. Every decision should be tested against the organization’s policies and values, applicable laws and regulations, as well as the individual employee’s definition of what is right, fair, good, and acceptable.

With these realities, an alternative decision-making model is imperative to address current realities.

The Rise of the Ethical Decision Making Model

To become an Ethical Organization, having a decision making model grounded on foundational ethical decision making is paramount.  An Ethical Decision Making Model ensures that the ethical issues inherent in a routine business situation could effectively be surfaced while making it easy for people in the organization to understand and use. To make it more effective, PLUS filters must be embedded within the process.

The ethical component of the decision making takes the form of a set of filters. At key steps in the process, considerations are run through the filters and separate the ethical conations from the remainder of the decision.

The PLUS Filters: What Really Are They?

PLUS Filters are ethics filters that have adapted to mnemonic word PLUS. PLUS is the mnemonic of Policies, Legal, Universal, and Self. The integration of PLUS Filters in the decision making process is best achieved when there are effective communication and formal mechanism in place.

The PLUS Filters are applied in each of the steps in the decision making process.

P = Policies

  • Is it consistent with my organization’s policies, procedures, and guidelines?

L = Legal

  • Is it acceptable under the applicable laws and regulations?

U = Universal

  • Does it conform to the universal principles/values my organization has adopted?

S = Self

  • Does it satisfy my personal definition of right, good, and fair?

The PLUS Filters and Its Application

Integration of PLUS Filters in decision making is best achieved with effective communication and formal mechanism in place.

Let us look at the first step: Defining the Problem.

In defining the problem, we aim to define the difference between the expected and/or desired outcomes and actual outcomes. With the PLUS application, PLUS surfaced the ethical issues and ask the question, “Does the existing situation violate any of the PLUS considerations?”

When the PLUS Filters are applied, this determines if the ethical components of the decision are being surfaced or satisfied.

The use of PLUS Filters in the decision making process can be your barometer in determining if decisions made are within accepted ethical boundaries agreed upon by your company and the environment that the company revolves in.

Interested in gaining more understanding of creating an Ethical Organization through the PLUS Decision Making Model? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Ethical Organization: PLUS Decision Making Model here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

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In today’s business environment, management consulting firms must be ready to address client challenges and needs that will transform their World Cafe pic 2business by 10 or 100 times. Tools and methods must be scaled up to ensure applicability to the widest possible audience globally.

The Consulting Workshop Series provides a good understanding of the 10 Methods of conducting Workshops that are custom designed to fit specific workshop objectives. Different methods are developed for the purpose of providing organizations the most appropriate tool necessary to support organizations to achieve their strategic goals and targets.

If it is the management’s goal to facilitate collaborative dialogue and the sharing of knowledge and ideas to create a living network of conversation and action, then the World Cafe is the perfect method to undertake.

Discovering World Café

World Café is a creative process for facilitating collaborative dialogue and the sharing of knowledge and ideas to create a living network of conversation and action. Its primary objective is for ideation and to share ideas.

World Café is a simple, effective, and flexible format for hosting large group dialogue. By using World Café, organizations can plan meetings and gatherings where a unique environment is created with surprising and useful outcomes occurring.

In a nutshell, World Café is a process of helping people to remember what they already know how to do: to convene conversations that matter.

The Approach to World Café

World Café can easily be organized as it just needs one person to put all preparations together: the Café Facilitator.

  1. Preparation. As in every event, preparation is the most critical. In World Café, everything hinges on Café Facilitator. Hence, it is important that enough time is spent in the selection of Café Facilitator. A Café Facilitator sees to it that the guidelines for dialogue and engagement are put into action. He/she is responsible in so many ways. There is a need to work with the Planning Team to determine the purpose of the Café, the name of the Café, and framing the invitations. When everything is organized, the Café Facilitator is the one in charge in posing the questions or themes for rounds of conversation and make sure that the question is visible to everyone on the overhead, flipchart, or on cards at each table.  Playing a vital role in World Café preparation and actual event, the Café Facilitator can make the difference between an interesting conversation and a breakthrough thinking.
  1.  The World Café Event. This is your main event. The World Café is focused on facilitating collaborative dialogue. Conducted in several rounds, it makes sure that sufficient ideas are generated and shared.

The application of World Café is so vast in terms of use. It is very useful when there is a need to engage large groups in an authentic dialogue process. When we need to generate input, share knowledge, stimulate innovation thinking, and explore action possibilities around real-life issues and questions, World Café is the most suitable amongst various methods in the Consulting Workshop Series.
World Café can even deepen relationships and mutual ownership of outcomes in an existing group. It can create meaningful interaction between a speaker and the audience. In fact, it can effectively engage people in authentic conversation whether they are meeting for the first time or have established relationships with each other.

Like any other approaches and methods, World Café is also most suitable for specific conditions and less in selected conditions. When you are already driving toward an already determined solution or answer, World Café may not be one for you.

Interested in gaining more understanding of the World Café workshop technique? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Consulting Workshop Series: World Cafe here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

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Robotics 2Disruptive technologies are helping companies automate work. Robotic Process Automation and Artificial Intelligence are taking up jobs which were in the past earmarked only for smart humans. Driver-less cars, automated check-in kiosks at airports, and autopilots steering the aircrafts are just few instances of how automation is transforming our world.

However, automation presents unique challenges that organizations need to identify and mitigate appropriately. These include costs associated with job losses; confidentiality of data; quality and safety risks stemming from automated processes; and regulatory implications.

Other critical factors to consider before investing in automation are adoption, pace of development of automation, and readiness of organizational leadership in redefining processes and roles to support automation.

The key question is how automation will impact our work in future. Should we anticipate benefits — e.g., efficiency gains and quality of life improvements — or dread further disruption of established business and job cuts?

Research by McKinsey suggests that Robotic Process Automation will impact 4 workplace areas the most:

  1. Workplace Activities
  2. (Re)definition of Work
  3. High-wage Jobs
  4. Creativity and Meaning

Now, let’s discuss the first two key areas in further detail.

Workplace Activities

Research findings (based on the US labor market data) reveal that the future does not likely hold complete automation of individual jobs, but rather automation of certain activities within specific occupations. The assumption that only routine, codifiable activities can be easily automated — and those that necessitate implicit knowledge will be unaffected — is misleading. Automation has already reached (or surpassed) the median level of human performance in some cases.

Capital or hardware-intensive industries — under stringent regulatory control — are slow and expensive to automate and need more time to reap return on investments. Whereas, the sectors where automation is mostly software based (e.g., financial services) may create value at a far lower cost and within rather shorter span of time.

(Re)definition of Work

The current level of automation can potentially transform a number of occupations to a certain level, but it requires redefinition of job roles and activities. Research reveals that only about 5% of occupations can be completely automated with the current level of technology.

In spite of this, automation can boost human productivity even in the highest paid occupations by taking care of repetitive daily tasks — e.g., analyzing paperwork, reports, data and evaluating applications based on criteria — and freeing up time for people to focus more on high value work that involves human emotions and creativity.

For instance, Automation and Machine Learning can automate diagnosis of common ailments, thereby enabling the doctors to concentrate more on acute or complicated problems. Likewise, lawyers can employ data mining tools to sift through piles of documentation to isolate the most relevant cases for their review.

Interested in learning more about the other key areas most impacted by Robotic Process Automation? You can download an editable PowerPoint on Impact of Robotic Process Automation here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

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Never before has Crisis Management been considered important.  With businesses being exposed to a disruptive environment, the emphasis onCrisis Management Pic2 Crisis Management has never been more profound.

“The secret of Crisis Management is not good vs. bad, it’s preventing the bad from getting worse.”- Andy Gilman of Comm Core Consulting Group

An organization is considered to be undergoing a crisis when there is a sudden and unexpected event leading to major unrest amongst the individuals at the workplace.  It is an emergency situation that disturbs the employees as well as leads to the instability of the organization.  When this occurs, organizations are expected to have critical documentation and process, e.g. Crisis Management Plan, Disaster Recovery Plan, Business Continuity Plan, etc., in place.

Crisis Management is the art of dealing with these sudden and unexpected events which disturb the employees and organization. Yet, often companies are like the metaphorical frog that doesn’t notice the water it is in is warming up until it is too late.  There are managers who either do not realize that they are in a crisis or their crisis situation is worsening.  The early signs of distress are often missed.  While they are not bad managers, these are managers that are under a set of paradigms that no longer apply and just let the power of inertia carry them along.

As a result, organizations in crisis find themselves faced with a potential cost that is greatly significant.  This can lead to longer recovery time, a direct impact on downtime, and lost revenue.

First Things First: Taking a Good Handle of Crisis Management

Crisis Management is the application of strategies to enable organizations to deal with a disruptive and unexpected event that threatens to harm the organization or its stakeholders. It is a situation-based management system with clear roles, responsibilities, and processes. In Crisis Management, it requires a crisis mindset. A crisis mindset is the ability to think of the worst-case scenario while simultaneously suggesting numerous solutions.

Being well prepared for a crisis is the epitome of Crisis Management. It ensures a rapid and adequate response to a crisis and maintaining clear lines of reporting and communication in the event of crisis.

Yet, often the organization and communication involved in responding to a crisis in a timely fashion provide the most challenge to business. Responding to crisis in the most effective way can be done by taking the 10 First Steps.

The 10 First Steps to Crisis Management

The 10 strategic First Steps are the organization’s guide when in crisis and there is a strong call toward initiating organizational change.

The first 4 steps focus on Culture and Leadership.

  1. Establish a Wide Perception of Distress
  2. Establish a Crisis Mindset
  3. Activate the Board as a Crisis Detector
  4. Change Top-Team Members

The first 4 steps will widen one’s understanding of distress and move people to actions at the time of crisis. It is at this stage that the Board will be empowered to see the forest for the trees and can enable organizations to focus on tough movers that can successfully make organizational changes.

The 5th step focuses on Change Management.

  1. Communicate a Great Changed Story

Communicating a Great Changed Story can create positive motivation to spur action towards change. When Change Management starts evolving, the organization is now ready to advance towards Business Transformation.

The 6th to 9th steps focus on Business Transformation.

  1. Integrate Trigger Points
  2. Have a Strong Cash Position
  3. Focus on Quick Wins
  4. Make Target-focused Incentive Plans

Business Transformation starts when trigger points are integrated and a strong cash position is maintained. Management can focus on quick wins to create a trajectory effect to spur actions and develop target-focused Incentive Plans to achieve a successful turnaround.

The 10th and final step is sustaining the gains through effective Talent Strategy.

  1. Retain your Talent

The final step is Retaining your Talent. It is recognizing those that can make a difference and finding the next level of talent that can create and sustain change.

Organizations can build its Crisis Management capability following the 10 first steps.  Crisis Management is not anymore a matter of choice; it has become a necessity.

Interested in gaining more understanding of the first 10 steps to surviving a crisis?  You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Crisis Management: 10 First Steps here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

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In today’s business environment, management consulting firms must be ready to address client challenges and needs that will transform their Scenarios3business by 10 or 100 times. Tools and methods must be scaled up to ensure applicability to the widest possible audience globally.

The Consulting Workshop Series provides a good understanding of the 10 Methods of conducting Workshops that are custom designed to fit specific workshop objectives. Different methods are developed for the purpose of providing organizations the most appropriate tool necessary to support organizations to achieve their strategic goals and targets.

If management is faced with a situation where the past or present is unlikely to be a guide for the future, Scenario Planning is the best method to use.

Understanding Scenarios as an Effective Tool to Planning

Scenarios are vision-building. It is an effective tool when the degree of uncertainty about the future is high.

What are Scenarios?

Scenarios are narrative descriptions of potential futures that focus our attention on relationships between events and decision points. Its primary objective is planning and preparing for an uncertain future.

Scenarios can be effective in improving long-term decision-making. It motivates change and generates alternative trajectories for future developments. You can use Scenarios to improve preparedness for emergencies and contingencies. Most importantly, Scenarios can be used to guide key choices and generate a vision that can facilitate action.

The Steps to Building a Well-informed Scenario

Building a well-informed Scenario takes 3 strategic stages.

  1. Pre-workshop Phase. The Pre-Workshop Phase is the starting point for establishing the framework of the Scenario-building Workshop. It establishes the opinions and intelligence needed for the workshop. It is also in this phase that the Scenario Team is organized to make sure that the preparations needed for the workshop proper are done in a most effective manner. This is most important as Scenario Teams are the decision makers, the experts, and the creative thinkers necessary in the development of the Scenarios.
  1.  Scenario-building Workshop Phase. Broken down into 2 sub-phases, the Scenario-building Workshop Phase is essential in establishing the scenario logic. It is in this phase wherein key factors in the environment are identified and the approach to fleshing out the Scenarios are established. Essentially, the Scenario-building Workshop Phase builds up the fundamental core elements that will support Scenarios as a useful learning tool.
  1. Post-Workshop Phase. The Post-workshop Phase is the concluding phase where scenarios and analysis are presented to the relevant public to generate insights. At this stage, it most critical that Scenarios are effectively converted into actual plans.

The Challenge: Converting Scenarios to Plans

At the end of the day, it is most important that Scenarios are converted into plans. Scenarios become plans after going through 4 strategic steps – Strategic Analysis, Scenario Creation, Strategy Finding, and Strategy Formulation. These steps shall be thoroughly discussed in the editable PowerPoint.

Interested in gaining more understanding of the Scenario Planning consulting workshop technique? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Consulting Workshop Series: Scenario Planning here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

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Most companies have ethics and compliance policies that get reviewed and signed annually by all employees. A company policy states that Ethical Organization pic2“Employees are charged with conducting their business affairs in accordance with the highest ethical standards.” “Morals, as well as legal obligations, will be fulfilled in a manner which will reflect pride on the Company’s name.” These all come from a company’s policy. Yet, to sustain a truly ethical organization, it takes more than a compliance policy or Values Statement.

“Corporate ethical failures have become painfully common, and they are not cheap.”

Billions of dollars have been paid in fines by companies charged with ethical breaches. Despite good intentions, organizations set themselves up for ethical catastrophes. In this age of corporate mistrust, creating an ethical workplace takes more than compliance programs.

Unraveling the Ethical Organization Paradox

According to the National Business Ethics Survey, leaders make concerted efforts to pay holistic attention to their organization’s systems. Yet, despite progress, a number has failed.

  • 41% of workers reported seeing ethical misconduct in the previous 12 months
  • 10% felt organizational pressure to compromise ethical standards
  • $185 M in fines imposed on Wells Fargo as 5300 employees opened up more than a million fraudulent account.

Despite good intentions, organizations set themselves up for ethical catastrophes. The paradox is, without realizing it, organizations tend to create an environment in which people feel forced to make choices they could never have imagined.

Preventing ethical catastrophes can be done. Organizations just need to create that environment where people are encouraged to make ethical choices. There are 5 critical ways organizations can boost ethical decision making.

Boosting Ethical Decision Making in 5 Effective Ways

Boosting ethical decision making is important. This can be achieved when done using the most effective ways.

  1. Foster a Speak Up Culture. This is best applied when the courage needed to raise ethical concerns are inhibited.  The corporate culture will dictate how people within the organization behave.
  1. Create Realistic Performance Targets. The second way of boosting ethical decision focus on ensuring that people do not make compromising choices to reach targets.
  1. Ensure Goals Are Fair and Non-conflicting. The culture of fairness in the organization is the main focus here. This is best applied when there are conflicting goals in pursuit of growth.
  1. Infuse Ethics into Regular Activities. This approach is the most challenging but life-changing. Often, leaders talk about business ethics only when there is a scandal or as part of the organization’s compliance program. Infusing ethics into regular activities ensure that ethics becomes an everyday part of the organization and its DNA. It becomes embedded in the way people relate with each other, work with each other, and even in the application of its processes and systems. Here, ethics become your organization’s everyday life.
  1. Set a Positive Example. Leaders play a vital role in setting higher standards when it comes to ethics. Essentially, they must be able to put themselves in the shoes of those they lead to see what unintended meaning they are sending. This can be seen in how they react to stressful situations or event confront poor performance. Leaders need to become extra vigilant as others may interpret their actions or behavior otherwise.

Organizations don’t want to find themselves in a front-page scandal. Hence, they must scrutinize their actions to far greater degrees than they may have realized. The 5 Ways of Boosting Ethical Decision Making can just be the organization’s steppingstone towards transforming into an Ethical Organization and sustaining it.

Interested in gaining more understanding of how Ethical Organizations improve Ethical Decision Making? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about Ethical Organization: Improving Ethical Decision Making here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

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In today’s business environment, management consulting firms must be ready to address client challenges and needs that will transform their Planning Cell pic2business by 10 or 100 times.  Tools and methods must be scaled up to ensure applicability to the widest possible audience globally.

The Consulting Workshop Series provides a good understanding of the 10 Methods of conducting Workshops that are custom designed to fit specific workshop objectives.  Different methods are developed for the purpose of providing organizations the most appropriate tool necessary to support organizations to achieve their strategic goals and targets.

If management is faced with a situation in which an urgent problem has to be resolved in a short period of time and when different options pose different benefits and risks, then the Planning Cell is the perfect method to undertake.

When Planning Cell is Most Effective

The primary strength of the Planning Cell Approach is it allows participants to better learn about and choose between multiple options regarding an urgent and important issue.  Having too many options can be confusing. Hence, we need to have a tool that can make things easier but effective in studying these options.

The Planning Cell works best in a situation wherein an urgent problem has to be resolved in a short period of time. Yet, with that short period of time, there are just too many different options with each option posing different benefits and risks. This can be confusing.

Since the majority of the participants are selected by a random process, Planning Cell can be used to address even highly controversial issues.

How Planning Cells can be Effectively Conducted

The conduct of the Planning Cell must be done in a systematic manner following a 3-phase approach.

  1. Preparation Phase. This is the critical first step to organizing the Planning Cell and designing its program. It sets the basic groundwork for the conduct of the Planning Cell such as the design program and logistics.  It ensures that the required personnel, advisors, experts, and advocates are recruited and the most important element of the activity is done: the development of the program design.
  1. Conducting the Planning Cells. The second phase is the main core of the event. This is where participants get to learn about and choose between multiple options regarding an urgent and important issue.  The schedule of the Planning Cells is often organized into multiple work units with each work unit comprising 3 major components or phases.
  1. Final Report Production and Dissemination. The final phase, this is the concluding part of the Planning Cell where results are summarized. The primary objective of the final phase is to ensure proper recording, documentation, and dissemination of the results of the Planning Cell. The final phase makes sure that the entire process is transparent and comprehensible.

The PLUS Factors of a Planning Cell

The Planning Cell as a participatory method has its advantages.  First, due to the random selection of the participants, the acceptance of the results increases. Second, the results of the Planning Cell are completely open. Advisors can develop their own solutions and recommendations based on their experience in the Planning Cell process.

Most of all, the recommendations of the advisors can promote action in, and protect the interest of the general body.  Planning Cell is a great opportunity to learn about the interest of others and make a more intelligent and informed decision out of multiple options.

Interested in gaining more understanding of the Planning Cell workshop technique? You can learn more and download an editable PowerPoint about the Consulting Workshop Series: Planning Cell here on the Flevy documents marketplace.

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In today’s business environment, management consulting firms must be ready to address client challenges and needs that will transform their PAME pic2business by 10 or 100 times. Tools and methods must be scaled up to ensure applicability to the widest possible audience globally.

The Consulting Workshop Series provides a good understanding of the 10 Methods of conducting Workshops that are custom designed to fit specific workshop objectives. Different methods are developed for the purpose of providing organizations the most appropriate tool necessary to support organizations to achieve their strategic goals and targets.

If it is the management’s goal to provide stakeholders an opportunity to stop and reflect on the past in order to make decisions about the future, then PAME is the perfect method to undertake.

Differentiating PAME from the Rest

The acronym PAME stands for Participatory Assessment, Monitoring, and Evaluation. It is a Consulting Workshop Method that is focused on evaluation and learning. It is an opportunity for the stakeholders of a project to stop and reflect on the past in order to make decisions about the future.

PAME as an approach can be used in various ways and in various points throughout the project. PAME is a helpful tool in avoiding pending or potential crisis and can help people determine the cause of a problem and ways to remedy it.

In the final analysis, it is most effective in shedding an understanding of why certain projects are not working well.

The 4-Phase Approach of PAME

PAME is best conducted using a 4-phase approach.

  1. Planning Phase. The primary objective of the Planning Phase is to help participants understand what they are evaluating, why, and how they going to do it. The preparatory phase ensures that time is well spent on preparation and planning a Participatory Evaluation. Hence, this is the most extensive of the 4 phases as it establishes the basic framework of the evaluation.
  1. Data Collection. The second phase, Data Collection ensures that data necessary for analysis is gathered. This phase is most critical as delegated individuals must have a good understanding of what data is needed to ensure the correctness of data collected. This will also affect the analysis of data if the wrong data is gathered.
  1. Data Analysis. Data Analysis is the evaluation of data using analytical and statistical tools. At this stage, the Evaluation Team must be able to decide the best way to present results, the resources, and time available.
  1. Presentation and Action Plan. The 4th phase of PAME, this phase focuses on presenting initial results and developing a future action plan. It is in this final phase wherein the correctness of phase 2 and phase 3 is most emphasized. The success of the final phase is dependent on the quality of data collected and the analysis conducted.

The Iterative Learning Advantage of PAME: Why PAME?

In the final phase, the initial results are presented to a larger group. The larger group has an opportunity to contribute to further analysis. Implications of the results shall be discussed in terms of conclusions that can be drawn, the learnings that can be derived from the results, and most importantly, the different options available to address the emerging issues.

The insights can inspire groups to reconsider initial objectives. This forms part of the iterative learning process of PAME. When this process of discussion, evaluation, and analysis is done, the organization can expect to come up with a future action plan that is well crafted and thought about. With PAME, expect your future action plan to be most strategic and focused on addressing issues in the most effective and robust way.

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