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19 November 2010

Dilbert on Green Consultants

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13 November 2008

Beware the old 'Bait & Switch'

I'm on the train back North having attended the Skillfair Consultants Conference in London - I go every year to learn from other boutique and solo consultants with a wide range of skills and services. One of the great grumbles at these sessions is the perception of the 'big name consultancies' as low risk compared to smaller operators, when the smaller operator will be cheaper, and, more importantly, you will always get the principal consultant working on your project.

The old trick of buttering up a client with senior staff until signing the contract and then appointing naive beginners to deliver the project is known in the trade as 'bait and switch'. I recently heard a first hand account (from the frustrated client) of a case where the client wanted to compare the carbon footprints of their numerous but similar sites. The well known firm they employed dropped a different team of juniors into each site (thus maximising fees in a short timeframe) and, lo, each team measured the footprint of their designated site in a different way rendering the comparison useless. Would a one-man-band have done the same? Very unlikely - it would be very inefficient to invent multiple methods - and they wouldn't stay in business for long if they were so incompetent to do so.

The moral of the story is that big isn't always better. Choose carefully...

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7 November 2008

The Environment Network

If you are in the environmental industry (consultancy, green products and services, recycling businesses, energy products etc), you might want to consider joining The Environment Network - an on-line social networking group set up by my good friends Jo Benison of Daxi Environmental and Graham Mills of GPM Network. It was initially conceived as a North East of England based network, but it has expanded rapidly to a global level.

It's free, so join up and ask me to be your friend!

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29 October 2008

A Game of Two Halves for Environmental Consultants

The ENDS Report has found that the Environmental Consultancy business is realigning itself to match the changing economic situation. Contaminated Land, traditionally the largest market in the sector, has tanked due to the slow down in the construction industry, but the cost cutting sector (energy, waste etc) is booming as industry tries to cut costs and the public sector continues with the sustainability agenda.

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24 September 2008

10 Questions For Any Business

1. How much does your waste cost?

2. No, how much does it really cost?

3. How much have your waste costs risen in the last year?

4. How much have your energy bills risen in the last year?

5. How much have your water costs risen in the last year?

6. How much does compliance with legislation cost you?

7. How much product do you have to sell just to cover your waste, energy, water and compliance costs?

8. Would you prefer to turn those costs into profit?

9. Do you have a plan to make this transformation?

10. Are your staff on board?

And a bonus one,

11. Have you heard of Lean, Mean & Green?

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8 September 2008

New Resources - Free White Papers

We've just started publishing a series of white papers for organisations, environmental consultants and students. The first, A Quick Guide to Carbon Footprinting, can be downloaded now from the resources page. More are under development and will come on-line in the next few weeks.

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