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Questions For Thought Leadership Consultants

A couple of years ago Russ Alan Prince, a contributor to Forbes magazine wrote:

“While thought leadership is a very powerful business development strategy that has been embraced by (large*) accounting firms, weaknesses in developing meaningful content and faulty distribution can result in a considerable waste of money”.

Here are few questions to ask any accounting firm in Perth offering to provide thought leadership for your business.

1. Can you see an abstract of 5 previous thought leadership reports they have produced?

Tip: If they will provide reports, take a few key phrases and put them in a Google search. As Russ Allen Prince says “(the )problem is that most of these (reports) are unimaginative rehashes and “me-too” documents”. If you find a lot of similar references on Google the reports probably fall into this category.

2. How much expertise does the consultant’s firm have in your industry sector?

Tip: If they don’t have a great deal of experience then don’t take them on. As Bruce Rogers, Chief Insight Officer at Forbes and one of the world’s foremost authorities on thought leadership, says “In constructing thought leadership campaigns, accounting firms or any professional services firms must approach the matter strategically” If they don’t have the strategic knowledge of your business the report won’t be much good.

3. What is the consultant’s strategy for disseminating their final report and gaining internal ownership?

Tip: As Russ Allen Prince says “Effective distribution is critical and is a more glaring problem for many accounting firms than producing worthwhile content”. If too few of your staff contributed to the report it is likely that it will not be owned and accepted by the people who are meant to implement its recommendations.