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Consultation and Standardisation

The words for standardised procedures in consultancy formats are numerous: tools, methods, techniques, approaches, props and much more! What is the gain of such procedures? What is lost by them? When are they useful? When damaging?

In order to answer these questions an understanding is required about the basis on which such established and repeatable procedural methods rest. Technology – as an embodiment of unambiguous repeatability – can be understood as a relinquishment of situation-specific information. This relinquishment can be more or less comprehensive. A fridge cools, a starter motor starts the engine. The context is (almost) completely irrelevant. The unforeseen, such as an erupting fire, is seen as a (destructive) disturbance, other things such as corrosion, as an undesired impairment.

Planned, standardised, technical procedures in consultancy and coaching rest on the same principle: the specifics of the situation are limited in favour of security in actions and goal orientation, the wealth of interactions in the client system, as well as the elements and factors examined. Attention is focused on specifics (or determinable things) and the connections between the chosen foci. A preparation of the actuality follows (A. M. K. Muller) and, in an ideal case, one ensures that processes, which could also be quite different, can be made controllable. It is thought of and handled as cause and effect. The ideal form of such a procedure is the calculation according to formulae (or painting by numbers).

The basis of standards in consulting is, therefore, that arbitrary elements are brought into a non-arbitrary connection. Within this lie profit and loss, opportunity and danger in one.