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How consultants can make a difference to an organisation...

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  • How consultants can make a difference to an organisation...

    For all of you who frequent restaurants and understand the need for the
    service to be faster, this short story is a timeless lesson on how
    consultants can make a difference to an organisation.

    Last week we took some friends out to a new restaurant, and noticed
    that the waiter who took our order carried a spoon in his shirt
    pocket.It seemed a little strange. When another waiter brought our water
    and utensils, I noticed he also had a spoon in his shirt pocket. Then I
    looked around and saw that all the staff had spoons in their pockets.

    When the waiter came back to serve our soup I asked, "Why the spoon?"

    "Well," he explained, "the restaurant's owners hired Andersen Consulting
    to revamp all our processes.
    After several months of analysis they concluded that the spoon was the
    most frequently dropped utensil.
    It represents a drop frequency of approximately 3 spoons per table per
    hour. If our personnel are better prepared, we can reduce the number of
    trips back to the kitchen and save 15 man-hours per shift."

    As luck would have it I dropped my spoon and he was able to replace it
    with his spare.
    "I'll get another spoon next time I go to the kitchen, instead of making
    an extra trip to get it right now."

    I was impressed. I also noticed that there was a string hanging out of
    the waiter's fly. Looking around, I noticed that all the waiters had the
    same string hanging from their flies. So before he walked off I asked
    the waiter, "Excuse me, but can you tell me why you have that string
    right there?"

    "Oh, certainly!" Then he lowered his voice.
    "Not everyone is so observant. That consulting firm I mentioned also
    found out that we can save time in the restroom. By tying this string to
    the tip of you know what, we can pull it out without touching it, and
    eliminate the need to wash our hands, shortening the time spent in the
    restroom by 76..39 percent.

    I asked, "After you get it out, how do you put it back?"

    "Well," he whispered, "I don't know about the others, but I use the