This work explores the nature of consultancy, the client organization and interactions between them. The main research question concerns factors that might affect whether or t a consultant can meet the client's needs. Very little has been written about the consultant/client interface, yet in some cases this might be highly significant to the process and outcomes. Some characteristics and factors in the complicated mosaic of consultancy in action that can affect the likelihood of a successful outcome are identified. This is illustrated through the developing role of the management consultant and proposes that there are significantly different approaches to consultancy. Some consultants make numerous contributions to the academic literature, developing and testing theory. Others produce just one or two best-selling books describing their approaches and solutions to management problems, while others do t publish anything at all, and it is argued that one group of consultants, the management gurus, might be unable to bring lasting and beneficial change to an organization at all.