The remarks on the state of consulting in education are fairly on target. She is obviously an authority on the subject.
Management consultants are generally geared to solving problems in corporations, at times in government. This is not to say that they cannot help or work with educational institutions. There are obvious parallels and opportunities for idea cross-pollination. Education, however, has hardly been a focus of consulting. The traditional model of education has been fiercely independent and authoritative to need or request consulting.
But it is obvious that the education industry is changing – significantly. More so because how students learn, is changing. And that has changed because of the environment in which they live today.
Coming back to Gillian’s article, it is not surprising that no one asks for credentials or expertise in the education domain when engaging consulting organisations. No consulting organisation ever positions itself as such. In fact, even PA Consulting (the consultants linked to, in her article, do not list education as an industry that they have expertise in). Yet they have come up with a paper for the Higher Education Industry (which the article links to).
There is an obvious gap here and it will be a significant opportunity to address by whoever chooses to take it up. And Gillian’s article lists all the key skills that will be required by such a consulting organisation.
One extra skill I will add to the list of this hitherto unknown education consulting organisation is: technology. Not just technology, but the relevant application and sane implementation of educational technology in institutions; one that manages learning for students, resources for teachers and administration for the management of the institute.