1) What were the main factors that contributed to your exceptional growth rate over the last 3 years?
As experts in Change Management and Operations Improvement, Clerestory has always had a unique and powerful value proposition. We have been at the forefront of Change Management’s evolution over the past 13 years and are starting to see a real shift in the marketplace. Increasing numbers of executives are appreciating the impact that change management has on each initiative’s success – and on each organization’s success as well. We specialize in integrating high-impact Change Management practices into every aspect of our clients’ operational improvement projects in ways that engage the clients’ staff and produce measurable results that meet each client’s specific objectives. To achieve our clients’ goals and monetize the impact of change management, we really need people with the right blend of experience, skills, and passion for measurable results. I would have to say that Clerestory’s greatest accomplishment has been in finding and honing those qualities in a group of exceptional, people-first, results-required consultants. It enables our teams to ‘punch above their weight,’ so to speak, and deliver a lot of value to our clients very quickly. We always leave our clients’ teams with new tools, skills, and a strong sense of ownership for their ongoing success. Our prospects and clients pick up on that quickly and it leads to terrific opportunities for our firm.
2) How is 2016 shaping up for your firm? Where do you see the most opportunity?
Well, since 2015 was such an exciting and fast-paced year at Clerestory, we came into 2016 with a lot of momentum. We are continuing our work on a number of mission-critical projects for industry-leading clients and our projections for the rest of the year look promising. We recently completed construction on an office expansion and are doubling down on our internal initiatives to grow and develop our firm. Everyone at Clerestory is excited and looking forward to another great year.
Since Clerestory has deep roots in operations consulting, our partners and consultants have been leading transformation projects across industries and functional areas for almost 20 years. In that time, we’ve managed to design and implement custom operational solutions for Fortune 50 to 1000 clients in all types of circumstances – consolidation, expansion, restructuring, system replacements, mergers & integrations, relocations, culture change, employee development, succession planning, organizational transformation – you name it. As a result, our methods can be applied at any intersection of people, process, and technology where a significant change is taking place. With constant advancements occurring in organizational strategy, operations management, and enterprise technology, we are seeing a big need in the marketplace for our expertise. Clients are working to gain or maintain a competitive advantage and that means getting solutions implemented quickly. Clerestory is well-positioned to deliver the types of solutions that clients are placing bets on and that people are predicting will distinguish their business from the competition over the next 3 – 5 years.
3) What do you see as the biggest challenges for your firm in 2016?
The challenge to Clerestory’s growth is hiring experienced consultants who are strategic thinkers and are also passionate about leading clients through implementation. Change is daunting. Our team has to have the interpersonal skills to persuade, encourage, and model the behaviors that will be required in our clients’ transformed environments. When you have proven methodologies, you can always find and train new staff members. That part is easy. The hard part is finding people who care. You can’t pay people to care. Caring about a clients’ success doesn’t come from a paycheck. That is a special quality that every successful Clerestory consultant has and it’s integral to our culture.
4) In 2015, Clerestory was named to the Inc. 5000 list as well as Consulting Magazine’s list of Fastest Growing Firms. What do those designations mean to your firm, your employees and your clients?
We are honored and truly excited to receive the recognition of being named to the 2015 Inc. 5000 list. Each of us believes that it is a recognition of the impactful results that we deliver to our clients every day. Thirteen years ago we simply wanted Clerestory to be a firm where we could do challenging work alongside great, smart people. We wanted to be a real partner to our clients by delivering their most important project objectives for a fixed fee and with fixed deadlines. We believed that we could delight clients who were both committed to change and who recognized the economic value of using change management to shorten the time it takes to get real results. This recognition is more than an acknowledgement of Clerestory’s past accomplishments…it is a vote of confidence that makes us want to prove that we can keep doing it every day.
5) Aside from the questions I have already asked you, what else would you tell me about your firm, the market, or the profession regarding the year ahead?
We know that our clients can succeed when they engage their internal experts in the changes they want to achieve. People support what they help to create. Clerestory has never made a client feel that we did something to them – we deliver on our clients’ goals by working with them. That is the beginning of adoption and user adoption is really what makes change stick; it’s the key to delivering sustainable results. We are excited to see that the market is demanding a different kind of consulting partner, and Clerestory is clearly different.