By

William LaGanza
Myth #7 Consultants know what you need “Why get advice from an academic researcher and not from a consulting company?” Let’s take the fundamental question, “How do I know what I need to know?” If you go to a consulting company, you might get their latest “fix”, a package or a template that will be...
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Myth #6 “I can solve my issues online.” Accessing information online is only the beginning. When you find an article or video online, you do not have knowledge yet; you have information that has counted as knowledge for someone else in their particular context. What is important is how you interact with the information you...
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“Why settle for the Top 10 hits on a search engine when I can work with an Academic Consultant?” Obtain skills and expertise that can bring value to your company in over 600 knowledge areas; Bring your issues to life: identify the scope of problems and generate solutions with expert knowledge from a fresh perspective;...
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Working as a consultant has rewards for academics. Some, like Stephen Cheung, see the opportunity for an “exciting intellectual journey”, that comes from applying theoretical knowledge in “real-world” situations. Cheung is further motivated by the “level of speed and efficiency” that exists in applied situations, which cannot easily be realized in a more bureaucratic structure....
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Myth # 5 “Our organization’s values are objective: Commitment, Integrity, Trust, Excellence, and Innovation, are all words that everyone understands, right – they are universal concepts?” Language is always ambiguous. Concepts are constructed by each of us and are continually re-negotiated as contexts, inputs, and emotional states change. “Nice day!” someone says. “Well, it’s a...
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Myth #4 “Innovation comes from knowledge production, transfer, application, and diffusion.” It is an unhelpful simplification to portray innovation as as a linear process. Rather, from the first idea to the eventual solution, and then iterations of that solution, knowledge is constantly being re-negotiated through discussion among stakeholders, enriched by expert advice and research, and...
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Myth #3 “Learning fast is key.” Organizations want to be smart, and most want to be ahead of the competition. Learning quickly to keep in front seems like common sense; however, you first need to understand exactly what to learn, and then engage as much of the organization as possible in the learning experience: What...
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Myth #2 “Useful knowledge can be transmitted or transferred, and stored – like a ball.” Knowledge is contextual. Trying to apply something that was useful in another context or contexts – best practice – has limited utility, because each new context has its own peculiarities, and each new challenge requires a re-exploration of needs and...
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Myth #1 “Brainstorming leads to innovation.” Brainstorming is just a place to start, that is all. It is an impoverished form of socially-validated knowledge generation. People need to express their ideas about what needs to be done to address a challenge, what the benefits would be, how to implement possible new solutions, and how to...
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The Institute for Corporate Productivity has recently released a study showing that high-performing organizations have advanced cultures of learning that help them to meet their developmental and strategic goals. The report cites the former president of General Electric, Jack Welch, as saying that, “An organization’s ability to learn and translate that learning into action rapidly,...
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