IBM within touching distance of all-time high...

The battle at the top of the White Space Thought Leadership Rankings has continued with IBM retaking the lead from Deloitte but the gap between the two firms is very narrow. IBM beats its competitors on resilience - through consistent and insightful use of both primary and secondary research - and in prompting action. However, Deloitte scores better than IBM on both differentiation and appeal.

The report says that if IBM continues to publish reports like a New and necessary in life sciences, and at the same time, pays attention to its weaker content that isn’t as effective at challenging current thinking, it could be on route to achieving an all-time high score. However there is no room for complacency: Deloitte could easily regain the lead if it continues to invest in Deloitte University Press - the organisation’s key source of insightful and innovative content.

This White Space bi-annual report, compiled by Source Global Research, ranks twenty-four global consulting firms based on four evaluation criteria (Resilience, Differentiation, Appeal, and Prompting Action). Following IBM and Deloitte, are The Boston Consulting Group (no 3), Capgemini Consulting (no 4) and Bain (no 5). This top five are the leading producers of high quality thought leadership in the global consulting industry during the second half of 2015.

Rachel Ainsworth, Head of Thought Leadership Strategies and Solutions from Source Global Research (Source), said: “One thing that’s become very evident is that significant, sustained improvement requires significant, sustained effort. No firm has made a step change in the quality of its thought leadership by accident.”

Five elements that matter most in creating high quality thought leadership

The report identifies five characteristics evident at firms that have improved the quality of their thought leadership: a very clear sense of what “good” looks like; a willingness to look at the gap between today’s reality and where they’d like to be; investment in training; centralised resources to support thought leadership across the firm; and a mandate to say “No” to weaker content.

Rachel Ainsworth added: “Change is never easy, but as those firms at the top of our table can testify, high-quality thought leadership can have a big impact on how firms are perceived by their target audience.”

White Space includes thought leadership from 30 of the world’s leading consulting firms, all categorised and searchable by service, sector and geography. In addition to White Space ratings reports, users are offered research and guidance on how to create impactful thought leadership.
read more