This is what is required to build intellectual property. It is a critical competitive advantage that most firms/professionals/consultants try to develop yet eventually quit.
Think of the time and cost savings in having the best slides available to your team. Not generic templates that are empty, but detailed study slides tracking a problem from start to finish.
Imagine being able to see how actual studies are done and being able to use/edit those files to support your clients.
Video explanations of each slide of many studies in SLIDES can be found on StrategyTraining.com should you want to understand how the partner developed/used the slide (FIRMSconsulting Insider level membership is required).
Let’s assume you are part of a 10-person boutique consulting firm or part of a 10-person office within a large firm.
It’s March and your office has completed four projects so far this year.
Each consultant has created 100 unique files (word, PowerPoint, excel etc.) in those 3-months.
The files are a mix of quality-standards. Some are unformatted drafts and others are incomplete PowerPoint decks. A mishmash of design and branding. Assume just 10% are finished documents that can be shared.
Most don’t have obvious names and have file names like “Client Deck V5”. So, searching for a useful file is hard. Not to mention the problem of files being stored across 10 laptops.
It’s just 10 people so there is no time to go back through each file and name them. It’s very difficult to do this.
All 10 people have to agree on a naming convention and stick to it, that is assuming they could come up with the correct naming convention and are willing to follow it. And errors in the naming convention will always creep in.
It is now December. And your team has diligently been uploading documents every quarter. In the 4th quarter you ask them to convert the newest files to a new format and upload. How do they know where all the documents created in the last 12 months reside on their laptop? So how do they know what to upload without being forced to upload everything again?
Assuming your firm had the time and could do this, the files would need to be stored somewhere, usually online. That would be 1,000 files (10-people x 100 files) stored online and probably only searchable by title.
If the online interface is not user-friendly and bulky, it would not be used.
Since most of the files, 90%, are incomplete drafts, anyone using the online database will generally have to click on many files to find 1 useful file.
And that can be tedious if the online database is slow and requires one to download each file to check what is there.
And forcing consultants to include detailed descriptions and keywords makes the task of cataloguing the 100 files even more difficult. Due to this requirement most consultants would probably use the incorrect labels or not load files into the system at all.
Assuming the files are all online, you also need to keep online and offline backups. You need a way to automatically sync that entire database to another online database and at least 3 offline hard drives. How would you do this? It’s very hard to do. Do you backup all files monthly or just the new files loaded in the last month? How do you easily backup only the latest files?
Assuming you have all your firm’s files in one place, how do you ensure the files can be read a few years down the line. Old PowerPoint, excel and word files are often not compatible with new online storage systems. So even if you succeed in getting them all online, over time files become unreadable.
If you are successful at building this database over 10 years, your prize is to go through the entire process of opening every file, updating the format and reloading them. You have to do this roughly every 10 years.
How do you make the files accessible anywhere and anytime on a smartphone or laptop, tagging and curating them, and creating categories with descriptions?
How do you surface the best content?
It is a significant competitive advantage to have this easy access to all files. And imagine how much you have lost in 10 years with files sitting on old laptops and discarded or backed up but not in a way they can be accessed.
Imagine your consulting staff turns over every 3 years (that is, everyone is replaced in that time due to resignations, managing people out etc.). As they leave with their project knowledge, this database becomes the only way to retain knowledge.
This is where many firms fail. It’s not that they fail at learning from rivals, they fail at using what they already have. And for a smaller firm which does not have many resources to begin with, knowing how to archive and easily use what you do have is very important.
Even if you work at a major firm, if your smaller office does not have access to the best content of the New York, Boston, London, Singapore etc., offices, you are essentially not much different from a boutique firm that may not have these resources.
Imagine if you had an online system that brought together the most insightful analyses in strategy, operations, implementation, digital etc. AND combined the best work your firm has ever done, best templates, neatly arranged files, with all files tagged, tracked and backed-up accurately?
SLIDES solves this problem
Use our curated study slides, tools, methodologies and toolkits.
Upload all your files to your SLIDES folder.
We take care of the storage, backups and conversions.
We take care of loading new tools, methodologies and toolkits.
We protect your competitive advantage.