The conference is started by identifying the main global trends that are shaping the future of consulting, particularly the growth in the market driven by transformation and questions around value, market divisions, evolving brands and business models.
Mirroring the new trends and VUCA, the new era consulting skills are bound to change and reflect a mix of literacy, competence and personal character. Clients want consultants to be more accountable. therefore consultants need to be aware of customers’ objectives and expectations and to take care to cultivate the enablers for growth and growth blockers.
We looked at the innovations and disruptions that are happening, and how this represents opportunities for consultants, if they develop their ability to learn from them. There are opportunities in Digital data analytics, collaborating globally, embracing the IOT and winning consulting engagements socially. To survive, consultants should focus on the following toolkit: Putting Client First, Go Industry, Invest in your people and Go Digital.
A critical discussion was around building company value, alternative financing options and the role of consultants. From a context that in developed countries the level of value that investors are seeking in companies is relatively higher in equity. Financial institutions should be focused on “gazelles” – dynamic companies striving for growth and recognizing the company value consultants should be used in seeking new ways for business development through access to finance, as well as to help companies improve financial management and reporting.
Talent was identified as another crucial challenge. We discussed that both consultancy companies and clients suffer from attracting the right talent and finding creative ways to engage them. The final discussion was around inserting Purpose into the culture and to create organizations that value not only product and profit but also people and purpose. Every consultancy project has a human aspect embedded in its nature; therefore consultants should not neglect the human asset perspective in creating value to their clients.
EBRD Conference offered a great platform for networking and discussing regional as well as industry-driven case studies.