The best of the best consultants do not just ask clients to rate their satisfaction and challenges. They do not just engage for the sake of engaging. They go beyond the business metrics. These consultants dig for the deep thoughts, the passions, emotions, and drivers that are at the core of how their clients operate. Understanding of what they found is the foundation of client relationships. Gone are the days of interviewing a select few and saying “I understand.” Data is changing the client intelligence landscape. Consultants are being swept up in a quickly rising tide that demands higher levels of understanding. The ones that work smarter will compete to the finish, and the ones that flail inefficiently against the movement will no longer be competitive. The best consultants add the most value by understanding how a client thinks and feels.
Collecting and understanding more and more client data has created more opportunities for consultants to add value. The data age is evolving into the value age. The best consultants are embracing this evolution and leading the way to add the most value. They can’t get enough client intelligence data. They say, the more unfiltered the better, the more genuine the better, the more thick with feelings and thoughts the better.
As mentioned earlier, asking questions of a sampling of employees doesn’t fly anymore in the value age. And asking open-ended questions of a large group just isn’t practical with today’s tools. These tools are children of the data age – when it didn’t matter what was collected so long as it was data.
Using rate and rank, fill-in-the-blank, and other survey tools is like flailing against the tide. All that will happen is that you will get really tired. Not to mention that everyone has access to these tools, and none of them, not even the ones with advanced graphics and gamification, offer the consultant a competitive advantage. To the best consultants, these tools are lipstick on a pig when it comes to client intelligence. They eat a lot of slop and take too much work to get to the bacon.
Relationships are founded on understanding, and relationships take time. In the data age that meant consultants interviewed a client’s employees one on one in order to understand their thoughts and feelings. In the value age, however, the same depth is expected but from more of the company. And moving from gathering the opinions of a few to understanding the entire picture is forcing consultants into a resources game that many cannot afford to play.
The 9Lenses platform is designed for consultants to easily solve the problems that deep, meaningful client intelligence poses without having to cut deep into margins. The best consultants in the industry, who are embracing the evolution into the value age use 9Lenses to productize their services into a client intelligence SaaS solution.
Competitive consultants use 9Lenses both to collect quantitative insights such as alignment and to go beyond the numbers with anonymous unfiltered qualitative responses to their questions.
Competitive consultants use 9Lenses to automatically show where the client’s strengths and challenges are and identify who can help. They can then dive deeper to see exactly where to focus their time to add the most value.
Competitive consultants use 9Lenses to interview EVERYONE at a client without needing to sit in meeting rooms or travel. They craft their questions to leverage the benefits of 9Lenses and gain a deeper understanding and competitive advantage over every other firm.
Competitive consultants use 9Lenses software to craft their SaaS solutions. They use the 9Lenses tools to put their questions and question framework into an interview format and then brand and run interviews on clients with the click of a button. They don’t spend thousands on travel for young consultants who won’t be able to interview enough people to meet expectations. They increase both their margins and effectiveness by offering their services enhanced with the 9Lenses software.
Competitive consultants enjoy unlimited segmentation of clients and client employees with 9lenses software. They aren’t limited to analyzing the data in one way. They can do it in any way that is needed and as many times as needed. If consultants continued to collect and import, however, they wouldn’t truly be embracing the value age. Competitive consultants have learned that asking questions many times means you have a question history. The 9Lenses platform connects similar questions to each other and allows consultants to compare client responses to a customized benchmark and historical database of client responses.
Big Sky Associates – Big Sky Associates is using 9Lenses to gauge the readiness and maturity of federal agencies’ insider threat program – before a threat materializes.
Infinitive – Infinitive Insight uses 9Lenses to evaluate the impact of organizational design and culture on security acumen.
CEB – An advisory firm that’s productizing IP in the 9Lenses platform to offer targeted solutions to existing members.
KCG – KCG uses 9Lenses to assess clients’ needs around their technical security environment and data security capabilities.