Consultancies include responding to requests for expert help, linked to changes in inspection arrangements. If an education provider takes a look at itself at an earlier stages, it has a far more thorough identification of performance issues and areas for progress. If it asks for help at a later stage, or when crisis or inspection looms, it’s too late.
A consultancy brings an expert and fresh critical eye to enhance improvement planning – valuable and effective so long as there is clear understanding of, and scrupulous avoidance of, issues of potential conflicts of interest. Most of us as consultants have other roles in monitoring, reporting, recommending, providing complementary services or training for organisations needing expert help.
Associates have a very difficult route to follow in this, avoiding conflicts of interest and avoiding being seen to misuse their other work as if they were magical insights into giving your provider a “makeover,” giving insider knowledge or “buying” success.
It doesn’t work like that, so I explored how an independent agency can channel and market consultancy services. Connex tested the market for such a service as part of a joint questionnaire with NASBM. This was circulated to c. 20000 school / education business managers. This was inconclusive, and while Dave, who acted as external consultant in this, is not seeking any further expressions of interest from potential associates, he is happy to share some of the issues of ensuring ethical, sustainable and acceptable practice. One increasing issue is that of institutional managements which are not fully challenged and held accountable as can be seen where staff and service users report demoralisation, disempowering and bullying which has eluded identification by those charged with governance.
Dave can be contacted for an informal discussion at:
int+44 (0)7985 797287 or e-mail pd AT daveellwand.co.uk