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FAQ

Projects with Timmermann Partners

The characteristic challenges of large change processes are:

  • Orchestrating the change smoothly starting with the kick-off
  • Finding the necessary number and scope of impulses and (also unconventional) actions and realizing them in an excellent manner
  • Reaching a large number of people
  • Not losing patience or intensity during the long time a true and big change requires

We support you concerning every single one of these (and other) challenges and help you reach a large number of people, e.g., by combining a top-down change approach with tools of bottom-up and viral change. We also employ our knowledge about and experience in project management to steer large projects

True change requires sufficient time. Projects with us usually run between 2 and 3 years. Of course, you don’t have to commit to such a long time interval right at the start. You might want to get to know us first, and find out if you like working with us. Naturally, with our goal being dispensable for the topics of the respective project, over time, our support intensity is likely to decrease over time.

The effort depends on the magnitude of the change and the size of the organization. Thus, in some cases it may be 50, 300 or 1.500 person-days. We discuss your demand individually and openly with you. In any case, you can always keep your risk low by getting to know what it feels like to work with us first

In our projects, we usually cover 4 roles to unleash our potential:

  • Partner
  • Project Leader
  • (Senior) Consultant
  • Junior Consultant (an intern)

In smaller projects, two roles may be covered by one person and in bigger projects the same role may be assigned to more than one person

Full of modesty (self-irony) we don’t take credit for only one but 5 contributions:

  • We “reeeally” do Things others only talk about. We don’t just apply a tool set. We conduct actions with the goal to maximize their effect. We have the courage to try something innovative and at times even be unpopular whilst still remaining appreciative and warm
  • To every project, we contribute a big, partly unusual collection of concepts and methods, tailor it to your individual needs, and constantly develop something new and creative
  • You may want to call us walking interventions. People that work with us undergo an intense professional and personal development, and we also learn with them. A reason for that lies in our habit to constantly give and ask for feedback in an appreciative manner and act upon our coaching habits
  • We help to organize and orchestrate change so that actions are interlocked and distributed over time in a reasonable manner
  • We are experienced in classical (strategy) consulting (learned at top classical consultancies like McKinsey and BCG) and we use our best practice knowledge gained from that background as well as our structured way of thinking to enhance our thought processes and yours

That usually boils down to 3 things:

  • Building and joining a project team and a client team. This is also when we conduct onboarding trainings and start very effective top team trainings
  • Conducting sufficiently pragmatic diagnostics as a basis for drafting a concept and neatly planning actions. This takes place in depth interviews and diagnostic & planning workshops but is also done with surveys and the analysis of existing data and documents, to give a few examples
  • Getting urgent tasks done, depending on the kind and progress of the change. That may contain initial communication based on a short-term communication concept including first communication actions like a tailored large group event with “moments of truth”

We prefer to shape sustainable and long-lasting programs with clients who really mean it. If we can support you with our expertise in any other way, we are more than happy to do so. In any case, you can always keep your risk low by getting to know what it feels like to work with us first

Timmermann in general

There are mainly two types of consultancies:

  • Classical consultancies, of which especially the big ones often provide excellent functional and/or strategic support. But they are not excellent at implementing their solutions. And in daily business, the solutions’ value is lost. They also don’t know how to reeeally change a culture, though they often claim to be change and communication professionals
  • Change consultancies that work with individuals or groups in organizations on soft topics. Here, the term “consulting” doesn’t really fit because, in fact, they basically only do trainings, workshops, and coaching. Classical business consulting doesn’t happen, at least not in high quality

Synthesizing both worlds, developing companies as a whole both strategically/functionally and culturally is what we call “Consulting 2.0”

The idea may become clearer once you browse our example projects. And our change management section is always worth a read just as participating in one of our workshops or extraordinary team trainings can help you really sense what we do and understand what it looks and feels like.

We do consulting 2.0. That means, we consult content-related and strategically. Together with you, we also make sure that the results are truly lived. Here, change management is just as important as the classical consulting approach

No, we work with companies from various industries. Historically, we have done an especially high number of of projects in the following industries: financial services, engineering, chemical companies, automotive, utilities, travel & logistics

Differences to classical consultancies (excerpt):

Top tier consultancies primarily support functionally and strategically. If they provide change services at all, it’s a clearly second rate topic that doesn’t really fit their own culture. Often, change is confused with informational communication and stakeholder management, which are only parts of good change management. Their projects usually take a few weeks or 3 to 6 months. The implementation of their often excellent concepts mostly remains with the client. In contrast, we …

  • … haven’t just theoretically understood that change is crucial for success but also truly live it, combining it with professional and strategic high-quality work and an overview of the big picture
  • … integrate our clients in our strategic consulting work, instead of completely doing it for them and in the process reducing their responsibility taking and end product quality, because our clients know many things best about their industry
  • … stay as long as the changes take in the minds and hearts, usually 2-5 years

Differences to change consultancies (excerpt):

  • In our corporate culture, we live and breathe change in a very transformational manner. Interestingly, this is not common, but you know what they say: the shoemaker’s son always goes barefoot
  • Most change consultancies are either extremely small or they are networks. So consultants are mostly freelancers, don’t really know each other and have trouble agreeing to a common work approach and living up to the same quality standards. Composing an excellent consulting and change team based on that is difficult. The core idea of transformational behavior requires closeness, long-term orientation and meaningful shared goals. This  doesn’t really suit a network culture that entails more cultural distance, different interests, and in a systemic view is rather a “bunch” than a “team” or a true community
  • We live a model in which people develop and train each other professionally and personally very intensively over the years. We use about 40% of our time for internal purposes. Most change consultancies act opportunistically and employ freelancers for their projects. As these are no “natives” of the company, they tend to keep the investment in their education and development rather low

If there is a couch nearby, you’re very welcome to take a seat or lie down for a bit if you’d like to take a break :o)
However, we don’t do psychoanalysis nor therapy and we wouldn’t ask you to lie down on a couch, may it be physically or metaphorically. Of course, part of change is always the change of individual mindsets and behavior patterns. That implies for you to open up personally and work on yourself – just as much as you wish. You are always in Control, if you want to. We are happy to support you in your personal development, e.g., through coaching. In everything we do though, we stick to the principle: “All offers are optional”

To mention only a few examples, we aren’t able to climb a route higher than 8+ (yet), win a soccer match against the local champion and we’re glad we have a gardener for our Timmermann Campuses garden. Besides that, we are no functional specialist consultancy and don’t support our clients in deep functional detail issues in controlling, condensers, or IT. Nevertheless, our business and technological knowledge and quick understanding is good enough to enable us to understand the functional matters in every project. This capability is crucial for us to be able to perform our specific tasks in the project.

Many of our clients had tried a few good change approaches before they worked with us and also administered reliable methods. However, in their opinion they didn’t make enough progress. The difference between partly successful and successful change processes is on word: “reeeally”. A lot of things only work if you reeeally do them. That is, if you not only understand the issue cognitively but also embrace it with your heart and personally improve. This is why we reeeally do what we say. We don’t give up easily and we also dare to take risks. In order to bring true openness into a project, we help to abolish faked “looking good in front of each other” and cooperate with our clients closely and trustfully. Reeeally!
The best way to get a valid impression of our work and what makes us different, is to get in touch with us personally. We’d be delighted to hear from you!

Fundamentals

We shape change with clients who really mean it. We mainly work on long term consulting projects that combine classical strategic top management consulting with exceptionally great change management. Those two combined make up what we coined “consulting 2.0”

Differences to classical consultancies (excerpt):

Top tier consultancies primarily support functionally and strategically. If they provide change services at all, it’s a clearly second rate topic that doesn’t really fit their own culture. Often, change is confused with informational communication and stakeholder management, which are only parts of good change management. Their projects usually take a few weeks or 3 to 6 months. The implementation of their often excellent concepts mostly remains with the client. In contrast, we …

  • … haven’t just theoretically understood that change is crucial for success but also truly live it, combining it with professional and strategic high-quality work and an overview of the big picture
  • … integrate our clients in our strategic consulting work, instead of completely doing it for them and in the process reducing their responsibility taking and end product quality, because our clients know many things best about their industry
  • … stay as long as the changes take in the minds and hearts, usually 2-5 years

Differences to change consultancies (excerpt):

  • In our corporate culture, we live and breathe change in a very transformational manner. Interestingly, this is not common, but you know what they say: the shoemaker’s son always goes barefoot
  • Most change consultancies are either extremely small or they are networks. So consultants are mostly freelancers, don’t really know each other and have trouble agreeing to a common work approach and living up to the same quality standards. Composing an excellent consulting and change team based on that is difficult. The core idea of transformational behavior requires closeness, long-term orientation and meaningful shared goals. This  doesn’t really suit a network culture that entails more cultural distance, different interests, and in a systemic view is rather a “bunch” than a “team” or a true community
  • We live a model in which people develop and train each other professionally and personally very intensively over the years. We use about 40% of our time for internal purposes. Most change consultancies act opportunistically and employ freelancers for their projects. As these are no “natives” of the company, they tend to keep the investment in their education and development rather low

The Timmermann culture brims with transformality. The core of transformationality is a focus on long term joint development, inspirational motivation, providing intellectual stimulation, appreciating each other, being a true role model (also in learning), trusting each another and having close relationships and shared goals. The opposite of our transformational culture is a transactional culture that relies on maximizing own advantages. It’s viewing the world as a zero sum game in which my loss is your gain and vice versa. This fosters silo thinking, “political behavior”, a lack of responsibility taking and a rough environment. At Timmermann, we constantly strive for both emotional and professional development. We are a learning community that strives for excellence and we truly live our values. One example of this is the way we give very direct positive and critical feedback to each other, which is rooted in a deep appreciation and has the goal of helping every single one of us to achieve excellence. Not only do we give feedback to help our colleagues to improve, but we also demand it from them, to help our personal development.

Timmermann Partners’ way of working

Like other consultancies, we work in project teams. Since our projects usually have a duration of more than 2 years, most of us works on 2 to 3 projects at a time. Despite having more than one client at a time, we travel less than most other consultants and we spend more time in the office, here at our beautiful Timmermann Campus in Munich, where we develop concepts for our clients or work on internal projects. Typical consultant tasks include:

  • Developing “playbooks”, e.g., for trainings and workshops
  • Moderating workshops and trainings
  • Problem solving with the Timmermann project team and/or with the client
  • Developing concepts and PowertPoint presentations
  • Having feedback sessions
  • Joint lunch (often with a lunch & learn session) with all Timmermen and -women at the Timmermann Campus

Our projects have a standardized team structure. On every project, there are 4 different roles.

  • Partner
  • Project Leader
  • Consultant
  • Junior Consultant

In smaller projects, two roles are sometimes covered by the same person, in large projects there is often more than one person per role.

Every role has its own specific tasks and responsibilities. At the same time, team members work together extensively in problem solving sessions, feedback sessions, and strategic conversations

Our “home base” is the Timmermann Campus in Munich. We travel to our clients, when we can best help them face to face. How often you would travel to our clients depends on …

  • … Your role in the project (Project Leaders spend much more time visiting clients than Junior Consultants (our word for consulting interns))
  • … The phase the project is currently in (at the start of a Project, we usually spend more time face to face with clients)

Currently, most of our clients are based in the German speaking countries  (Germany, Austria, Switzerland), but we usually work with clients that are engaged globally, which brings along projects in a number of countries, where we also travel to support our clients. Roughly speaking: in the beginning you will be travelling for 1-2 days a week, later on 2-3 days. So all in all, we travel less than the 4 days that are typical for most consulting firms

Client work

Usually, our projects have a project team, also on the side of the client. We work especially close with the members of this project team. We introduce them to change topics, support them in their personal development (which also gets us to work on ourselves), and we develop concepts and solutions together with them. To that end, we often work face to face with our clients or we conduct team trainings with them. We are also in steady contact with our clients via telephone and email and from time to time we invite clients over to join us at the Timmermann Campus and enjoy our buzzing Change and innovation atmosphere.

Since our projects have a focus on sustainable improvements and really having a lasting effect on our clients, we work quite long projects of usuallay 2-3 years. This long-term project structure leads to most Timmermen/-women working on 2 client projects at a time. Each of our projects is characterized by intense, close cooperation with many different colleagues and clients

Since our work involves changing entire corporations, we are in contact with clients from all hierarchy levels and functions. We work especially closely with top management and project team members on the client’s side. Typically, the intensity of client contact depends on your role as a Timmerman/-woman.

  • As a Partner you work directly with board members and top management
  • As Project Leader you work closely with middle management
  • As a (Senior) Consultant you work primarily with the middle management and employees
  • As a Junior-Consultant you mostly work with employees and sometimes the middle management

No, we work with companies from various industries. Historically, we have done an especially high number of of projects in the following industries: Financial services, engineering, chemical companies, automotive, utilities, travel & logistics

Applying at Timmermann

Applicants for all consulting positions move through our five step application process, however there are slight variations to the process, depending on which position you apply for. After each step both you and we can decide to end the process or to move on to the next step. Those steps are:

  1. Screening of relevant documents
  2. Telephone interview
  3. Personal interview and case study
  4. One day trial work (only for consultant and higher positions)
  5. Sharing a freetime activity with our Managing Partner Michael Timmermann (only for consultants and higher positions), or a conversation on the phone with a(n) (Associate) Partner (for the Junior Consultant position)

The application process for all non-consulting positions differs. If you plan to apply to such a position, please send in all relevant documents to initiate the application process. We will get back to you and inform you of the next steps. No matter the position you are applying for, we really want to get to know you, both personally and professionally

All you have to do for the telephone interview is to ask yourself one question: “Why am I truly interested in consulting, change Management, and Timmermann Partners?“

In the personal interview and case study we mainly look at the way you solve problems. To prepare, we recommend to practice typical consulting case studies. There are a number of books written specifically to practice for job interviews in consultancies. Those can give you a good impression, the main thing is that you practice a lot, don’t only read(!) those books! And focus on learning to structure your approach and thoughts. Of course, our case studies differ somewhat, because they also include change management questions.

 

Yes! We look for open-hearted, intelligent, authentic people, irrespective of your professional background

Whether you apply for an internship as mandatory part of your studies at University, or simply because you want to gain more experience, does not matter to us. In either case, feel free to apply as a Junior Consultant (consulting intern), HR Intern, or Marketing Intern. Usually, internships at Timmermann last around 6 months with a wage of 1.700 € per month.

 

Yes! Both for interns and for permanent employees, we offer a luxurious shared appartment on the Timmermann Campus. Usually a room is available. This comes with great roommates and is even subsidised by the us.