This booklet is the first version of the Operating Method. This is our framework for running a professional services company, e.g. a consulting company or an agency business.
We provide key principles for running your business efficiently and outline how you can use the Operating software suite to apply this method to your business. We help you smoothly manage your operation, while also helping you take care of your greatest asset: your consultants.
Our method is by no means the only way to succeed – each company has their own habits and traditions which make them unique. However, following our discussions with hundreds of consultancies and agencies and with our experience working in the best consulting companies in the Nordics, we’ve come to a conclusion that some of those traditions are holding companies back.
Agency founders are often hustlers: great at sales and networking, but not so great in scaling an operation efficiently. Managing a scaling business is time consuming, and you can’t afford to hire too many non-billable roles to help you figure out what’s going on. There’s simply not enough time to focus on processes, tooling, and ways-of-working without hurting profits.
Because of this, most agencies are not operating optimally and have a lot of inefficiencies. Agencies end up building their own ERP systems and digitizing their processes in their own way, leading to them “redesigning the wheel” or not making use of best practices.
Good news: you are not alone in this problem.
Ultimately all professional services businesses sell projects or their people’s time to their clients. You might invoice on a time & material basis, take a fixed fee per month, or do something more exotic, but in the end your process is not unique.
The Operating Method we outline here is tool-agnostic. However, by using Operating, you will have the tools to help you focus on what matters and stay on track. Let’s start with staffing.