The discovery phase is the foundation of any client engagement. It begins with a thorough analysis of the situation and the client’s vision. This includes definition of the problem or need and drafting outcomes for the engagement. Data is collected through a variety of activities: organizational research, surveys, focus groups, observations and interviews. We also create our consultant/client partnership agreement.
The data gathered during the Discover phase is analyzed, and desired performance is compared with current performance. Gaps/needs are identified, expected outcomes are finalized, and success criteria are defined. We present a high-level recommendation for the solution(s) that best support attainment of the specified outcomes, discuss required resources and create a project timeline.
For a learning solution, a detailed design document is created and materials are developed. For other solutions, all tools, job aids, processes and supporting resources are developed and finalized. A pilot phase may take place to assess effectiveness of the deliverables and make revisions for program launch, as well as training and coaching internal partners to support implementation.
The final solutions are put into action and a procedure for monitoring effectiveness is implemented. Adjustments are made as needed to support the success criteria for the project. We begin to assess changes in behaviors and measure the shift from current performance to desired performance. Initial evaluation data is collected.
This phase consists of gathering and analyzing evaluation data, which is used to prepare summary reports for the client. The effectiveness of the solution is evaluated, as well as the consultant/client engagement. A facilitated “post-mortem” session can be conducted with project stakeholders to identify best practices and lessons learned for application to future projects.
“An organization’s ability to learn, and rapidly translate that learning into action, is the ultimate competitive advantage.”