How Knowledge Accumulation changed the Competitive Advantage of Strategy Consulting Firms
AbstractResearch evidence confirms that the accumulation of knowledge contributes to the competitive advantage of firms. In the strategy consulting industry, one of the most knowledge-intensive professional services industries, however, established firms thatexploited their knowledge accumulation by adding exploitative consulting practices have found their performance has deteriorated. To investigate this phenomenon, this paper willdescribe how the increasing share of exploitative practices in the strategy consulting industryhas attracted both established ICT-related consulting firms and new entrants, and enabled clients to expand their problem-solving abilities. We will argue that these developments in terms of competitiveness and client competencies have reduced the attractiveness of exploitative practices for established strategy consulting firms. To analyse thesedevelopments and to provide strategic options for the established strategy consulting firms, a conceptual framework will be proposed. Based on this framework, three strategic option are identified: â€˜Follow the herdâ€™, â€˜Become ambidextrousâ€™ and â€˜Back to the original focus.â€™ In summarizing our argument, we highlight the pros and cons of these options and the implications for top management.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM), ERIM is the joint research institute of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University and the Erasmus School of Economics (ESE) at Erasmus University Rotterdam. in its series Research Paper with number ERS-2005-026-STR.
Date of creation: 10 May 2005
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Web page: http://www.erim.eur.nl/
knowledge; exploitation and exploration; ambidextrous organization; strategy consulting;
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2005-09-29 (All new papers)
- NEP-HIS-2005-09-29 (Business, Economic & Financial History)
- NEP-INO-2005-09-29 (Innovation)
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