In Friday’s Independent, Johann Hari described what he terms the “management consultancy scam.” He draws from a recent string of memoirs by former management consultants. As one of them described the industry:
The column hammers the profession hard for its tendency to recommend layoffs and for the often disastrous results. However, I think the larger point is that managers in any kind of organization (corporate, government, etc.) are perfectly happy to use consultants to outsource tough decisions. Consultants present themselves as experts, we accept them in that role, and thereby achieve cover for when things go poorly. We could tell a similar story about the advice that consultants from the World Bank etc. give to developing country governments.
(Hat tip to 3QD.)