Consulting

We are evidence-based consultants. We don’t tell you what you want to hear. We let the data take us toward reality. We have worked with Fortune-500 companies, start-ups, hedge funds, family offices, and more.

David Siegel at the EU parliament building delivering a keynote on governance.

David Siegel at the EU parliament building delivering a keynote on governance.

Executives are focused on their “top-ten” priorities - everything else is noise to them. But we can look back on what we did a year ago and see that those top-ten weren’t as important as we thought. We often miss weak signals and developments that we should be paying more attention to. Long-term priorities rarely take first place against the pressing needs of this week.

We help:

  • Build a more resilient governance framework.

  • Evaluate the portfolio and look for hidden risks.

  • Discover “white elephant” projects that can free up resources for more productive efforts.

  • Stop the long-term planning! Stop phase 1/2/3 mentality.

  • Build statistical literacy into the culture.

  • Learn to run controlled experiments to separate reality from fiction.

  • Identify “rigorous nonsense” in your organization, rank, and work on eliminating it.

  • Ask the right questions.

  • Frame the decision.

  • Research the possibilities, especially those outside the box.

  • Develop a common vocabulary around uncertainty, framing, and possibilities.

  • Build failure and joy into the culture.

  • Develop decision criteria.

  • Turn decisions into pilot projects with measurable outcomes.

  • Improve communication using appropriate content across many channels.

  • Improve engagement to better listen and include more stakeholders.

We don’t do phase 1, phase 2, phase 3. We experiment, iterate, and test as quickly as possible. We expect to fail as we learn our way to finding what works.

Example projects:

  • How can we hedge against long-term macro trends?

  • How can we all learn to be more experiment- and evidence-based?

  • When should we do experiments, pilots, and long-shots? When should we commit?

  • How can we develop an agile worldview that will guide us correctly in the future?

  • Develop a merger/acquisition strategy that adds shareholder value (most don’t).

  • How can we build uncertainty and the possibility of “black swan” events into our culture?

  • How can we find and measure weak signals that will be important in the future and give us an edge?

  • How can we build a strong portfolio for the future?

  • Is self-management right for our company?

  • What is our listening and engagement strategy?

"David is one of the most progressive thinkers I have ever met."
     — Julian Teike

Some of our workshops:

Business Agility Worldview This is a half- to whole-day experience that wakes people up to their biases and how un-evidence-based they really are. Exposes myths and beliefs that are holding you back.

Build a better board David Siegel has taken the Harvard Business School board course and finds it full of rigorous nonsense. Whenever a disaster threatens a company, the board is the last to have the information necessary to understand and correct course. Learn how to build a more diverse, more active board and eliminate the rubber stamping and groupthink.

How to Avoid Decision Disasters When was the last time you saw a business disaster, whether a minor mishap such as excessive team conflict or a major calamity that threatened bankruptcy? Behavioral economics studies show that most of these disasters are preventable and stem from one or more poor decisions. Gleb Tsipursky offers case studies and best practices from these pioneering leaders and provides clear take-aways to help you avoid disasters.

Achieving Organizational Goals Through Social Intelligence Why do most organizations act as though people are driven solely by logic and reason? Extensive behavioral economics research shows that the large majority of our behavior is based on emotions. Failing to engage stakeholder emotions effectively undercuts motivation and engagement, and leads to turnover, internal discord, and toxic cultures. This presentation offers case studies from these organizations and provides clear take-aways to help you use social intelligence-based strategies to achieve your organization’s goals.

Should you Trust your Gut? You probably heard advice for leaders to go with their guts, stick to their guns, and be confident. Unfortunately, behavioral economics studies show that following these typical pieces of advice – and many similar ones – often leads to disastrous consequences for leaders, since our gut reactions and intuitions are a poor fit for leadership contexts. Groundbreaking research on best leadership practices forms the basis for this presentation, which busts leadership myths and offers clear take-aways to facilitate your leadership success.

Do financial regulations work? We are not going to tell you what you expect to hear. In this workshop, you will see and understand how ineffective many financial regulations are and how they are a huge waste of time and effort. Are there ways out of this trap? There are, and they start with you.

"Fast paced, insightful, lively, and fun. David unapologetically crushes common business myths with hard evidence and introduces agile thinking tools that can make the difference between a business failure and thriving on change."
— Boaz Heller, Singularity University