Yes, we are. One of us are trained as an anthropologist, and we all use anthropological working methods every day.
What does that mean? Social anthropology focuses on humans as active members of societies and cultures.
Consequently, our starting point is not a finalized theory about companies, what they are and what they ought to be. As social anthropologists we meet companies and people with a profound respect. Those people have developed their organization and culture. They are happy, and it works. Our job is not to make the company resemble companies in general. Our job is to add a few elements that the company needs or wants.
It is our job – together with the company and on its terms – to help the company develop a quality management system, ensure compliance with relevant legislation and implement demands from market or legislation in meaningful ways.
Thus, we may not resemble consultants. We do not meet the company with standard models and standard solutions that the company has to adapt to. And we do not believe that we can solve today’s problem the same way we did yesterday.
On the other hand, we do not meet the company empty-handed. We do have a suitcase with tools and methods. But we do not open the suitcase until we have spent time listening and getting to know the company.
And when we finally open the suitcase, we do not reveal final solutions. Our suitcase contains tools and models that need adaptation in order to ensure that they actually suit our client. Our solutions are tailor-made, and we know from more than 25 years of hard work that much too many projects involving external consultants end up in nothing. Standard models and solutions are OK if you are a standard company. But as all companies are individuals, standard models and solutions are of no use and no meaning.
Results and meaning are crucial to us – it was 25 years ago. It is today.