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BUS3053 : Management Consultancy Project

  • Offered for Year: 2022/23
  • Module Leader(s): Ms Sarah Carnegie
  • Owning School: Newcastle University Business School
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 20.0


This module provides a practice-based alternative to the dissertation, advanced business practice, and advanced business topics modules.

Drawing on the learning across your programme of study, the module provides you with an opportunity to apply your learning to practical business challenges by working for an external client to address a business issue for their organisation.

This module aims to provide you with an opportunity to;
1.       Evaluate empirical evidence and management information to inform your understanding of classical and contemporary management practice and thought;
2.       Appreciate the complexities and constant change in addressing organisational needs in a challenging environment;
3.       Develop your leadership skills and appreciate ethical aspects inherent in management decision making.

Outline Of Syllabus

The Consultancy Role:
-what management consultancy is;
-how the management consultancy role can be defined, and which typical responsibilities and activities are included ;
-challenges, risks and pitfalls of the management consultancy role.

The Consultancy Cycle:
-the principles and stages a model for managing the consultancy cycle;
-the consultancy cycle and typical inputs and deliverables for each stage of the cycle;
-the diversity of consultancy interventions and approaches;
-the importance of scoping interventions effectively and agreeing clear contracts with clients;
-problems, risks and issues which may arise during each phase of the consultancy cycle.

The Client Relationship:
-methods of establishing credibility and engaging your client;
-the principles of consultation and negotiation in managing clients;
-the importance of professionalism, ethics and confidentiality in building and maintaining client relationships.

Communication for Consultants:
-the importance of effective communication;
-the principles and processes of effective communication;
-listening and questioning techniques to help understand issues and problems;
-different forms of verbal and non-verbal behaviour and their appropriate uses;
-planning and managing meetings effectively,

Effective Project Delivery:
-the importance of planning and managing a project (the impact of poor project planning and management on consultancy projects);
-the components of a project plan ;
-the need for effective budgeting of time and resources;
-the role of quality assurance;
-applying personal time management techniques within the project context;
-potential risks to effective project completion.

Structured Research and Analysis:
-the importance of clearly identifying the client issue, applying a structured approach and selecting appropriate analytical tools and techniques;
-the importance of confidentiality when dealing with sensitive information;
-applying a range of simple, recognised data gathering, problem solving and analytical tools and techniques (such as SWOT, PESTLE, etc) to achieve agreed outcomes;
-presenting the results of research and analysis both orally and in writing.

Self Assessment:
-Belbin assessment
-Working styles assessment

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture21:002:00PiP
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture32:006:00PiP
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion1100:00100:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesPractical13:003:00PiP Initial Client Meeting
Structured Guided LearningAcademic skills activities120:0020:00Online materials and LinkedIn Learning
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading1106:00106:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching121:0012:00PiP Group project progress reviews
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery11:001:00PiP/Online
Guided Independent StudyStudent-led group activity1150:00150:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The lectures provide the students with an introduction to the theoretical basis of consultancy, an appreciation of the research processes to be followed to ensure they conform to the university ethical standards and raise their awareness of the skills required to engage with an external client and undertake business research.

The small group teaching is undertaken with each group separately to ensure client confidentiality, and the workshops enable students to develop their skills in reflective practice and provide formative support for their individual assignment.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Prof skill assessmnt2M10Group Oral Presentation to Client
Report2M40Group Management Report on the process and outcomes of the management consultancy intervention (8,000 words)
Essay2M50Individual Reflective Account (3,500 words)
Formative Assessments
Description Semester When Set Comment
Written exercise1MFormative assignment [1,000 words] Individual Reflective Account
Oral Presentation1M2 x 10 minute presentation
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

NB: Marks from the management report and oral presentation to client will be adjusted from the group mark based on peer review.

The elements being assessed i.e. the writing of a management report and the reflection on effective consultancy skills development, are seen as the two most important elements in management consultancy. These assessment methods are deemed appropriate in supporting the aims of the module and in the achievement of the intended knowledge and skills outcomes.

Reading Lists