Consultancy Skills and Practice

Modular value: 20 credits

Assessment: There are a variety of assessment components for this module, including group report (40%), a group presentation (10%), a client/supervisor assessment (10%), a peer review (10%) and a short written exam (30%).

Module Aim

This is a practical and innovative module designed to develop new subject-specific and transferable skills within students.  The module will be organised around a group-based consultancy assignment with a real client on a marketing planning or marketing communications issue.  The module will require students to deconstruct and negotiate a new consultancy project task, apply a range of frameworks to structure analytical thinking, apply techniques to complete the required research, and demonstrate effective presentation skills in communicating the final results to their client.  The principles of effective consultancy and project management will be introduced alongside the barriers to successful intervention and how consultants manage risk.  Through the project, students will develop skills for effective engagement and intervention, further understand their strengths and weaknesses in relation to team-work and leadership skills, and further develop their personal project management capabilities.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • The nature of consulting, clients and the consulting process, and theories associated with facilitating change in organisations.
  • Consulting and intervention styles and client-centeredness.
  • Managing relationships with clients using the consulting cycle – including managing risk, productive relationships, expectations, handling problems, barriers to implementation, evaluation.
  • Soft systems methodologies to help with structured thinking.
  • The principles and techniques for effective project management.

In relation to skills, on completion of the module you will have developed (or enhanced) your ability to:

  • Conduct research into strategic marketing issues (including deciding on appropriate data collection methods, analysis and interpretation).
  • Plan, manage and complete a consulting project to a brief, budget and timescale.
  • Demonstrate effective relationship skills and professionalism (including negotiation, facilitation, communication and relationship-building skills).
  • Adapt and innovate to solve problems, and to manage in unpredictable situations and make sound judgements in the absence of complete data
  • Effectively present information orally and in writing, and an ability to formulate and deliver logical and precise arguments.
  • Work effectively as part of a multi-cultural group, and use self-direction, initiative and planning in the context of independent learning and the management of assignments.