In my consultancy work, the consultant always uses some ideas based on a model system. An experienced and a professional consultant would choose certain models to meet the requirements of the client and also identifying the strengths and weaknesses of the models. There are four models that are popular in the consulting industry – the doctor model, detective model, salesperson model and the travel agent. I will define the four models and relate it to Eagle Technology Consultants work.
The doctor model is the most popular model used by many consultants, and is based around a medical analogy. The assumption here is that the client is suffering from some sort of an illness that needs to be cured. Consultants who use this model presume that either the client or the organisation is need of some sort of treatment. Therefore the consultant will start by trying to find out what the problem or the illness is, and then look for a medication or a solution. (Margerison, 1995; 104)
The detective model is based upon the principle that something is wrong, therefore they need to find the person or people that are responsible so that it can be changed or removed. When this model is used it is assumed that there is an implication of a criminal conspiracy, and that is why the problems have occurred. If this does happen, then there is a tendency to have some sort of a cultural surrounding the consultancy work that is associated with the blame. An example could be where an accident has happened within the workforce and the client wants to know why it has happened, and how to resolve it.
This model looks at the clues that are associated with the breaking of the law. (Margerison, 1995; 104) The salesperson model brings upon the assumption that the consultant has a product or service that will be appropriate to the client, and will be of benefit to the organisation. With this model comes a problem of where the client gets the assumption that the consultant has a bag full of tricks ready to produce the right product to solve the issues. Therefore you will not see many consultants using this model.
(Margerison, 1995; 105) The travel agent model brings upon the assumption that the client wants to go on a journey. Where the client does not know specifically where they want to go or how to get there. Therefore the consultant has to go through the objectives with the client in order to determine what vision the client has. By doing this the consultant can then build up a vision of what their client wishes to achieve. (Margerison, 1995; 106) Analysing Eagle Consultants article, I can conclude they have used three models.
These are the doctor model, detective model and the travel agent. Coca-Cola Foundation was faced with a problem of upgrading the Sales Force Automation Toolkit. In a typical medical doctor style, Eagle Consultants assessed the Sales Force Automation Toolkit programme and began work with Coca-Cola employees to fully customise the product. This is similar to a doctor assessing a patient’s symptom and thus issuing a diagnosis of the illness. Also, Eagle Consultants have demonstrated using the officer model.
Tiffany Decker, Principal Certified Lotus Professional at Eagle Technology Consultants stated, “Highly specialized and detailed reporting was necessary to fulfil the sales team’s needs. This consisted of integrating the SFA application with EssBase, Microsoft Excel and Lotus Notes reporting system. Our current initiative is to move away from the client-server based system and will soon take the application to the Intranet and Internet via Domino, Java and other web applications. ” http://www. eagletc. com/Article5. aspx
This showed that there were structural changes made with the appropriate research carried out. The final model applied was the travel agent. Initially Coca-Cola Foundation was not sure which marketing tool software to develop but due to the intervention of Eagle Consultants guiding them to their objective target, Coca-Coal Foundation chose the Toolkit. This is an example of one visiting a travel agent and looking at the different travel brochures, and thus with the help of a travel agent having the ability to choose a holiday destination.