IDEAS AS ART.
By: Coutu, Diane,
Harvard Business Review,
October 2006, Vol. 84, Issue 10
THE HBR INTERVIEW with Stanford's James March
If a manager asks an academic consultant what to do and that consultant answers, then the consultant should be fired. No academic has the experience to know the context of a managerial problem well enough to give specific advice about a specific situation. What an academic consultant can do is say some things that, in combination with the manager’s knowledge of the context, may lead to a better solution. It is the combination of academic and experiential knowledge, not the substitution of one for the other, that yields improvement.