The Consulting Playbook, Edition #26

 Welcome to our new series, the Consulting Playbook, a collection of posts designed to offer insights into how businesses and their executives can utilize consulting as a strategic lever to boost performance. Each Consulting Playbook post is broken down into a few elements: Case Study, Additional Information regarding the technical application, and Additional Links related to the topic.

 Boosting Time Delivery and Lead Time Recovery in Food Services

The delivery to a major client has spiked to an all-time high thus new buy concept and internal operations excellence booster was required. The shareholder and a major client too, needed a robust recovery plan of increased missing parts, avoiding new missing parts backlog and adequate measures for maintenance planning, headcount demand, flexibilization and supply chain optimization. The company decided to call for support from a consultant.


Creating and Implementing the Recovery Plan

  • Appointment of Recovery Manager was made to implement measures for recovery assignments from Management Board to shop floor level.
  • Diagnostic of the current situation, root cause analysis and Daily Action Tracking was implemented covering supply chain, synchronization of production control rooms, for all the three plants, enabling to achieve targets and recovery plan.
  • Design and application of workshops and meetings for reporting to shareholders and stakeholders, work councils conducted.
  • OEE was performed to stabilize recovery, and lean workshops done to enhance team’s understanding of the changes.
  • During the duration of the project, the consultant provided support to the CEO as Trusted Advisor, acting as sounding board to define the course of action and facilitating the convergence of stakeholders in a difficult period.


The Success of the Project Delivered Desired Outcome

An aligned recovery plan, daily management action tracker, weekly missing parts report were implemented. A stringent tracking process was applied with well-defined measures. There was a restored trust in transparency and management control by the shareholders achieved. A result and recipient oriented requirements catalogue was produced for Shareholders.


Additional Information –


Are You Well-prepared for Crisis Management?

Check out Our List with 12 Points on Crisis Management Below

The Food industry is especially vulnerable to various types of crises, and many Executives feel that they can always improve their level of preparedness. Being good at crisis management should be a priority for Executives and designated employees. Food recall, Food disease outbreaks, and Product withdrawal can be extremely costly and cause serious supply disruption, as well as result in costly law suits by Consumer Advocacy groups, and the list with troubles goes on and on.

The public, your consumers, as well as the media can be unforgiving and your business, and organization can suffer serious damages. We like to think that your organization tales all necessary and legal measures, to avoid situations like that, but here are a few great insights on how to deal with crises.

12 Points List

  1. The outcome of a crisis and the effect of your business strongly depends on how your company responds and the attitude it demonstrates.
  2. Be prepared in advance, do not wait for an event to occur, and act afterwards. It might be too late, and the damages harder to control.
  3. How quickly you respond and how flexible you are in dealing with the parties affected in the crisis is very important.
  4. Big businesses have an advantage over smaller companies, as they are usually better organized and more prepared pre, during, and post-crisis period.
  5. An essential part is to have a detailed Crisis Management plan in place, and the designated parties to be well-familiar with it.
  6. Have a list with outside Experts who can help you manage the crisis.
  7. Stay on top of the developments and have the latest information, so you can take the most effective actions.
  8. Practice empathy and understanding of the affected party’s situation in the crisis.
  9. Take responsibility and make necessary commitments in resolving the crisis.
  10. Communicate honestly and openly with the media, outside vendors, the public, and finally with your team members and employees, to reach to the solutions as efficiently as possible.
  11. Manage your cash flow – a crisis event might sometimes freeze your sales and cash flow completely, so it is crucial to have an action plan in moving forward and enough cash supply for business operations.
  12. Plan with Insurance companies to protect your assets, business, and ensure the recovery steps and receiving compensation.


For Further Reading:

Author: Helene Laffitte

Civil Engineer by training (Ecole des Ponts et Chaussees), our CEO has held several Executive positions in Operations, R&D, and Procurement and Industrial Strategy for one of the biggest Energy Companies in the world. She left Europe for the US in 2011, and, after completing an MBA at Columbia Business School, launched her 1st consulting practice. After exchanging with peers and customers, she launched Consulting Quest, a global performance-driven consulting service platform. “The idea, at first, was to provide disruptive solutions for both clients and providers. I combined the experiences of my co-founder and mine to start Consulting Quest, a disruptive start-up that leverages big data to improve the performance for both clients and consultants.”