One of the hardest things to explain is where valuable insights come from in one’s consciousness. In writing about what makes Philip try to achieve excellence for clients, there is one fundamental theme:
- The desire to learn, for the “challenge”: that brings out the best of his skills, and focus on the task at hand regardless of the difficulties of the course. It is change that fascinates him, it potential reward and risk, and how to manage that risk.
Philip has invested many years in training as an Economist, MBA from London Business School, and other seats of higher learning. He speaks 5 languages fluently.
During his career he has witnessed all too often how:
1. the lack of a cohesive strategy jeopardizes the performance of otherwise viable economic entities;
2. Internal strife as a result of lack of strategic focus brings conflict and paralysis.
As a counter to this, he has witnessed:
1. How effective a truly client focused business can be, once its strategy is aligned to its business opportunity;
2. How enthusing clients can bring lasting financial rewards and out-performance of competitors.
Gnostam is very proud to collaborate with a team of psychologists on projects around the world that involve risk management, including the world’s leading experts in the management of human factors that affect catastrophic risk which use a “Scenario based” audit for ensuring verification of risk latency in high risk operations, such as in offshore Oil and Gas operations.
Philip and his team are working in a multi-disciplinary basis to determine the economic effects of high risk of failure management systems.
The Human Factor in Business Strategy Consulting
Human cognition is our competitive advantage as a species’; our defining skill is the ability to continue to learn. Today we learn at an accelerated rate. Philip is a life long “learner”, and is particularly interested in the dynamics of how groups learn and perform. Coming from to consulting from financial management, Philip found “change management’s” multidisciplinary nature fascinating.
Effective organizational change should begin with a systematic diagnosis of the current “market” situation in order to determine both the need for change and the capability to change. The objectives, content, and process of change should all be specified as part of a Change Management plan.
By focusing on how creative talent reaches customers in new digital ways, how clients interact digitally, through mobile devices, through social networks, increases in sales effectiveness can bring immediate benefits. But long term effective change invariably comes from communicating with existing customer, as well as attracting new customers. Change also comes from a deep social understanding about leadership’s styles and group external and internal dynamics .
Transformation projects align groups’ expectations with new strategies, communicate strategy and integrate teams and their training. It makes use of performance metrics, such as financial results, operational efficiency, leadership commitment, communication effectiveness, and designing appropriate strategies, to avoid future failures.
Our approach while dealing with human and social factors in both financial and strategic consulting is extremely quantitative when it comes to measuring performance and financial results.
In particular we measure:
- Benefits that management and owners wish to realize against measurable stakeholder aims;
- Create a business case for their achievement (updated),
- Monitor assumptions, risks, dependencies,
- Monitor costs, return on investment and cultural issues affecting the progress of the associated work
- Devise effective communications with various stakeholders identifying the reasons for the change, the benefits of successful implementation (what is in it for us, and you) as well as the details of the change (when? where? who is involved? how much will it cost? etc.).
On a qualitative side we:
- Work with qualified vendors for training and/or skills upgrading knowledge and its transfer for the organization.
- Persuade naturally resistant employees and align them to overall strategic direction of the organization.
- Provide personal counseling (if required) to alleviate any change-related fears.
- Monitor the implementation and fine-tuning as required.
What a client has said:
“Philip worked on the restructuring of the Sirena 3 Project in 1999, based in Moscow Russia. His work as project Team Leader was invaluable in enabling the $0.5bn project to be completed and ensured that the government guarantee from the Russian Federation was exercised, and all suppliers were paid.
He was able to very quickly bring an “External Focus” on the main problems including the complete reassessment of the business model which had been based on project user fee revenues using traffic patterns of the Pre-Soviet Union break up, and “baby-Flot” balkanization of the regional domestic airlines of the Russian Federation.
He was very skillful in convincing all suppliers to accept an extension of the payment terms to ensure that the project had sufficient cash flow to be complete by end 1999.
In short he is an exceptionally talented advisor to major corporations and large investment projects and I have no problem recommending him very highly.
Tatyana Federenko, Assistant to Deputy Minister of the Russian Federation Ministry of Aviation.