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Posts Tagged ‘Management Consulting’

CoolChip Technology Benefits from ZENeSYS Competitive Landscape Analysis Methodology

September 23, 2011 Leave a comment

On August 20th and 21st, 32 future management consultants from top Business Schools in India participated in a ZENeSYS Boot Camp. The objective of the  boot camp was to learn ZENeSYS Competitive Landscape Methodology and write the best analysis for CoolChip Technologies.

Winner of MIT clean energy award and recipient of a DARPA grant, CoolChip Technologies has perfected its patented technology for rapid heat removal from high performance computer chips. They are now ready for its next level of growth.

The participants in the Boot Camp were tasked with using the ZENeSYS Competitive Landscape Analysis (CLA) methodology to provide an unbiased assessment of CoolChip’s product features as compared to its competitors. Three teams from Boot Camp submitted their analysis in the final round which prompted the following response from William Sanchez CEO of CoolChip Technologies.

“We had the opportunity to benefit from their novel methodology for competitive landscaping. The ZENeSYS analysis will be very useful for CoolChip’s next stage of growth as we seek our next round of financing. In-depth understanding of the competitive landscape is curial for positioning our company. The ZENeSYS systematic framework provides a clear, concise mulch-dimensional presentation of the competitive landscape. The tool is a priceless piece of machinery for processing unwieldy amounts of information. The rapid report generation and high standard of quality make the market intelligence very valuable and a resource CoolChip will continue to use as we explore new market verticals and require comprehensive analysis on incumbents and new entrants.”

About ZENeSYS Competitive Landscape Analysis (CLA): A methodology that has been perfected over two years to get the most up-to-date snapshot of market conditions as it relates to a client’s specific product or service. The methodology uses a framework based on competitor goals and customer’s preferences to synthesize news, blogs, forums, white papers, patents, press releases, testimonials, product literature, industry reports, books, and journals to identify best practices and opportunity areas. Startups develop insights for growth and investors get an unbiased assessment of investment risk.

A Creative Market Entry Strategy for CoolChip Technologies

August 15, 2011 Leave a comment

In a first of its series, ZENeSYS is launching a management consulting training boot camp and a competition to go along with it. CoolChip Technologies, the MIT startup and winner of MIT Clean Energy award is the client sponsor.

The training is directed at young aspiring management consulting professionals in India who are already at business schools or are looking to make the transition. In a week long run up to the first day at the boot camp, participants will learn consulting tools and methodologies available to them online at our website.

On day one of the boot camp, the participants will hit the ground running with a reference market entry case and guidance from instructors at ZENeSYS. On day two, they will develop a market strategy for CoolChip Technologies using our Competitive Landscape Analysis methodology, a powerful and proven technique for quick analysis of opportunities and threats for new products.

The CEO of CoolChip Technologies, Mr. William Sanchez will be present in the Boot Camp to interact with the six teams over Skype Video to answer questions and judge the winning team. The boot camp will be held in New Delhi on August 20th and 21st. Participants from leading Business Schools such as Delhi University, FMS, IIT-DMS, SJMSOM and IIM-R are registered to participate.

“I am truly exited about this boot camp and am looking forward to the creative ideas that will emerge from the entries” said William Sanchez last week at MIT when I met him.

If your firm has an interesting product or service for the emerging markets and would like to be considered for the next Boot Camp, please send me an email at ssen@zenesysconsulting.com.

10 reasons why Consulting Remains the Top Choice for MBAs

August 1, 2011 Leave a comment

Although finance remains the number one recruiter at around 30% for placements at top business schools, consulting is not far behind at a consistent 20% on average. If one takes into consideration that there are limited number of vacancies in consulting as compared to finance, this gap could be even narrower.

So what could be the reasons why business school graduates like to enter the management consulting profession?

We offer 10 good reasons:

  1. Hooked on solving cases: The case based teaching gets them hooked. As they enter a business school, b-schoolers will find a different method of learning and working. The case based learning provokes thinking, gets them into researching facts, analyzing their findings, and synthesizing them into a big picture for deriving creative solutions. They never thought they could come up with solutions like this before and now they are hooked. Management Consultants tackle their engagements just like a business school case. So it’s quite understandable that if they are enjoying their casework at business school, they want more of it.
  2. The creative and the non-conformists: Chances are that this is what drew them into a business school to start with. They got tired of doing the same thing and listening to their boss for every day tasks. They want to do things their own way and not follow directions or bury themselves in a process. The consulting profession is the only profession that calls for maximum room for creativity. There is no micro-management by the boss other than the “dreaded deadline”. They are given the brief on their assignment and then off they go.
  3. It is a gateway to interesting work: Management consultants get exposed to interesting work right away. Examples include Mergers & Acquisitions, Investment Banking, Venture Capital, Private Equity, Corporate Strategy, Transformation and Research. Understandably, this will be only true for those entering the top tier management-consulting firms but candidates can still aspire to build their credibility in sideline projects in smaller or lesser known consulting firms.
  4. Provides exposure to sunrise sectors: By definition management consulting projects gravitate towards sectors that are experiencing a paradigm shift. Currently this is happening in Energy, Health and Information Technology. With the interest in environmental issues, energy crisis and alternative energy interest, consultants are in high demand to provide research, direction and transformational advice. The health sector is experiencing cost and regulatory pressure which is inviting thought leadership from the consulting industry on making necessary business process changes, effective use of technology and call for application in emerging science such as biotechnology.
  5. Consultants play in many sandboxes: Most likely an MBA graduate would not want to get pigeonholed into one company’s vision, technology and ways of doing business. They would want to play in many different sandboxes, right? Well that is what consultants get to do. Each project is different because each situation is different in the consulting world. They will get into different cultures, different technologies, different markets, different infrastructure and even different size budgets each time. This makes it challenging, interesting and a valuable learning experience for them.
  6. Puts an MBA in the “board room”: If not literally, as management consultants, candidates are presented with finding solutions to the toughest issues a company is facing today. This means that their work will have visibility all the way to the CXO level – something not possible in any other profession – at least, not when they are starting out their careers.
  7. Preparation for going their own way: Consulting profession prepares candidates well for going into business for themselves or entering a startup. This is because only in management consulting one can quickly develop skills for tough decisions, tight deadlines, getting the numbers to work, selling, purchasing, motivating, politics, influencing, handling conflicts and communicating effectively. Learning all these skills is possible in other jobs but will take twice as long.
  8. A stepping-stone before deciding on a long-term path: When starting out, young professionals may not be sure of their final calling. For example, do they want to be in a leadership role and rise up to become a CEO? Do they like marketing or sales? Do they prefer to stay in engineering, technology or R&D? Do they like operations role such as customer service, purchasing, accounting, or HR? If they are not sure then they can enter management consulting and experience all fronts and decide later where they want to go. Whichever line they pick, they will surely have ample experience and confidence to fast track to the top when they make up their minds.
  9. Builds their personal network: Consulting is a profession that is guaranteed to make ones LinkedIn connections reach the 500+ mark faster than any other career. Moreover, it will give them a far richer and diverse set of connections as opposed to any other profession. As we all know in these days of social media, career progression is very much tied to the relationships one will build.
  10. The need to get a faster return on investment: Last but not the least, consulting happens to be a well-paid profession so chances of repaying that expensive business school loan are quicker compared to other jobs. No one objects to a ROI that is sooner rather than later.

On an ending note, it would be improper to portray management consulting as a flawless career choice. Consulting is an intense profession with long hours and frequent travel. More than 50% who enter will exit this profession within three to four years. On the brighter side, no ex-consulting professional will deny that it was an exhilarating experience and that it helped them tremendously in the formative days of their career.

ZENeSYS provides live case based certification training program to business school students and other aspirants in Management Consulting. See our training website for more details.

Our own Competitive Analysis

March 8, 2011 Leave a comment

If you are in need of custom market research, competitive analysis, or data analytics, here are your options:

  1. ZENeSYS – A virtual, scalable network of certified management consulting resources
  2. Guru/Elance – A host of other portals for engaging freelance consultants
  3. Big Firms – The big name firms like Gartner, IDC, Yankee, Forrester, & Big 4
  4. Client – You could do it yourself

So how do we stack up?

While we are relatively unknown, our unique model of using a network of our own certified consultants has two powerful advantages:

  1. Virtual Consultants meaning lower cost, faster engagements, diverse expertise
  2. Assurance of quality from ZENeSYS core team

Our consulting certification process is a result of developing unique course ware and assessment methodology for over three years. The result – all our past clients are willing to act as our references.

How to get acquired as a startup

February 19, 2011 Leave a comment

I love to speculate what the future will bring when this long recession is finally over. I do subscribe to the popular belief that there will be a new normal. Small business will rule. At the same time the big guys will go on an acquisition spree to play catch-up. Here are seven tips for startups planning to get acquired as their exit planning.

  1. Qualified and Passionate: The founders and leadership team should have a background that indicates not just capability but the ability to sustain ups and down.The casual and the un-passionate will not be able to face the “startup demons”.
  2. Be aware of the competition: Earth calling. Are we the only intelligent life on this universe? Others may be light years ahead. Either change course or do something to leap frog.
  3. Prove the model: Get paying customers and show that the business model works and is sustainable. This seems to be a standard litmus test for any potential investor or acquirer.
  4. Build Credibility: Have referencible customers and link up with well recognized partners. This is one part of assessing  barrier to new entrants.
  5. Get Noticed: Build a good online presence through a well laid out website and a social media marketing plan. When acquires come window shopping, they need to see an audit trail.
  6. Hit the milestones: Show a steady progress on your accomplishments. This is the second factor for building a barrier to new entrants. New entrants need to play catch up.
  7. Prove your uniqueness: Patents may not fully protect the IP but it gives instant credibility and gives investors a sense of assurance that a startup in on to something unique. The third barrier to entry factor.

Connecting with leading B-Schools in India

February 9, 2011 Leave a comment

Our consulting skills certification program has attracted the attention of leading B-School students in India. In the last three years nearly 40% of a graduating class were snapped up by consulting firms. In some instances consulting intake has exceeded the traditional finance and marketing new hires.
Awareness about consulting as a career has jumped significantly on B-School campuses. Yet very few options are available for them to learn consulting skills. The opportunity to work on live consulting cases at ZENeSYS is a major draw.

Unlike other live cases on campuses,  ZENeSYS provides an entire life cycle consulting experience. They start with problem definition, creating the hypothesis, developing frameworks, conducting research and analysis/synthesis for the final recommendations. A unique experience for the participants.

To date interns from the following Institutions have worked on ZENeSYS projects:

  1. IIM-A
  2. IIM-B
  3. IIM-C
  4. IIM-L
  5. IIM-I
  6. IIFT
  7. SPJIMR
  8. SJMSOM
  9. NMIMS
  10. Symbiosis

Participants benefit by learning and applying tools and methods leading consultants use. A certificate, CV points, endorsements   and the sheer experience has put several ZENeSYS alumni in consulting jobs.  For ZENeSYS, the participants genuine desire to learn and demonstrate their analytical capabilities has created many happy clients. Some of our alumni are now returning to ZENeSYS as clients, creating a virtuous cycle.

What’s hot in India for business opportunities

February 5, 2011 Leave a comment

Since the 1990’s has created an image of “Outsourcing Nation” in the eyes of the West. This notion has blinkered the opportunity India presents itself as a consumer. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) rose from $10B in 2005 to $40B to 2009. In year 2008 export from USA to India jumped 85% in just one year alone according to US Commerce Department.

Recent High Growth Sectors in India:

  1. Infrastructure: Real Estate, Automotive, Transportation, Nuclear and Alternative Energy
  2. Technology: IT product development, Business Process Outsourcing and Software Development
  3. Healthcare: Hospitals, Medical Insurance, and Biotechnology
  4. Education: Vocational Training, Schools, Universities, and Business Schools
  5. Retail: Organized Retail
  6. Food & Beverage: Packaged food and Alcohol

Some investment vehicles to consider are joint ventures or direct investment (several sectors are open for 100% ownership by foreign corporations. Franchising is taking on like wildfire with coffee chains, retail stores, hospitals, schools, white goods, eye wear, fashion accessories, garments, and fast food.

Entrepreneurship in the technology sector has proved to be a lucrative hunting ground for Private Equity investors. Several PE funds have been setup in the last three years looking for venture and buyout investments in technology, healthcare and biotechnology startups .