Blog | Empathy and Learning in Project Design

In an analysis project, the bulk of the project work is focused on analyzing the business and the client’s operations. The consulting team uses a variety of tools and methodologies to understand the details of the client’s business. These include interviewing key players, benchmarking performance against best practices and industry standards, and updating the client core team members on the findings.

Data is at the core of the analysis. Consultants need to collect data in order to analyze the current state. These include operational data, financial data, internal documentation, prior or ongoing initiatives, and data from consulting studies and observations. Analysis of current state includes key performance indicators and lower level measures.

The project timeline breaks-down by week the team deliverables. Projects generally require a short kick-off and start-up period during which the team gets access, reviews and develops their initial project plans, and meet with their consulting counterparts.

A key tool for the consultants is their empathy. Consultants view how people are performing their work and what obstacles they face daily. Consultants listen to what people are saying about what’s working and what’s not working for them. And finally consultants must understand how people and organizations are feeling about how things are and how they should be and the views of the organization about the leadership’s ability to create alignment between future goals and current realities.

The final part of the analysis project, that typically take 3 to 6 weeks to complete, is focused on designing the future roadmap, building implementation project timelines, defining synergy opportunities, and defining the key project risks. The project team that consists of full time employees and consultants, jointly present their findings and plans to the Project Sponsors. Implementation may take 6 to 18 months to complete with pre-defined benefits targets, ongoing reporting and regular sponsor updates.

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