Publication Date

Spring 2014


An internal consultant is an organizational development professional who is employed full time by an organization (Lacey, 1). Internal consultants differ from external consultants in this regard, however, generally speaking they do serve a similar purpose and in doing so follow similar steps. The general model of planned change outlined in Cummings and Worley’s, “Organizational Development and Change” state that all consultants adhere to five phases throughout each project lifecycle. These phases include: entering, contracting, diagnosing, intervening, and evaluating. Each of these stages is approach slightly differently depend on whether a consultant is interval verses external. As an internal consultant it is important to note the leverage points that exist at each stage. While an external consultant often need to spend a large portion of time getting familiarized with their client, and internal consultant has the benefit of “ready relationships” and ideally knowledge of business and company Jargon (Lacy, 2). Ideally, the internal consultant also has a benefit in the diagnosing phase, because they already have relationships with members from all over the organization and have a reputation for success. On the flip side an internal consultant does not buy-in from organizational members. External consulting groups sometimes are better able to generate energy and interest because they constitute a large expense and sometimes come with prestigious credentials (Elder).


Suggested Citation
Balter, R. (2014). What are the common factors among consulting competency models? Retrieved [insert date] from Cornell University, ILR School site:

Required Publisher Statement
Copyright by the authors.