Monday, February 28, 2011

Berka Consulting Client Outreach

Dear prospective client,

We here at Berka Consulting, Inc. believe that intelligence makes us smarter. And it is that intelligence we want to apply to your business challenge. By pairing strategic market insights with our associates’ refined business acumen, we can construct a plan to surmount whatever formidable business obstacles stand in your way. Each of our colleagues have years of experience manipulating data to best support whatever approach we’re recommending. No, the data may not lead to the implied conclusions we’re making, but we’re so skilled at skewing the perspectives of third-party viewers, you won’t know the difference.

You undoubtedly face a vast range of complex challenges, and we can help you with all of them. Thankfully, we’ve developed a single tool that we cleverly and methodically force-fit to every single one of them. But don’t worry, it will always seem as if we’ve created a process and solution tailored to your specific needs. And that’s exactly what we want you to think. Each of our associates has received very specialized training in mining seemingly useless data and turning it into what appears to be a well-structured, highly integrated solution.

Furthermore, we at Berka Consulting know that the most important kind of capital is thought capital. And that thought capital can be found in a range of different types of people. But we also know it always makes it better if the “thought capital” also has a pretty face. That’s why we factor physical appearance into all hiring decisions. You can be sure that the team you’ll be collaborating with throughout the rigorous analysis phase makes it easy on both your intellect and your eyes.

We look forward to delivering a customized, data-driven plan to put your business on track. Please direct all business inquiries to cberka2 [at] gmail [dot] com.

J Scott Berka
Berka Consulting, Inc

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Berka Consulting Welcomes Paige J. Deckert

I am pleased to announce the newest addition to Berka Consulting, Inc.  Paige J. Deckert joins the team with impressive qualifications and will be an asset to our organization's success moving forward.  Please join me in welcoming Paige, and you can learn more about her credentials from her application's cover letter below.


Miss Christine Berka,

I am writing to express interest in your position of associate senior consultant at Berka Consulting, Inc.  Though I lack the last name Berka, I can only hope that I can live up to the very high standards of wit and sarcasm set forth by you, your family, and those ridiculously good looking genes.

Though I appreciate your desire to have extraverted, judgmental people, I will use this as the first reason as to why I would be an important addition to your team.  The Meyers-Briggs test has notoriously low psychometrics.  Because I am getting my PhD, I can use fancy words such as “psychometrics,” and people believe I know what I am talking about.  Other fancy words include “antecedents,” “empirically validated theoretical model,” and “competencies.”

I believe that Berka Consulting should use best practices grounded in research.  When I say something such as “treat your employees better and it will increase their job satisfaction,” I have research to back it up (Graen & Uhl-Bien, 1995).   Research-based phrases can also be used to increase billable time from clients—“the specifics in our plan of action will depend on the context of your organization, to truly understand the situation.  As a result, it will require a site visit” (Johns, 2006).   “If you make work meaningful to the employees, job performance will increase.  It would be best to send a team to interview job incumbents” (Grant, 2008).  By using recent citations, clients will believe that we are on the cutting edge of management research, and our meaningless statements about business will have even more impact. 

As you know, I have 1.5 years experience in consulting.  Though the experience has been valuable, I will understand if you render in null in consideration for employment because of the affiliation with Penn State.  Nonetheless, I have gained learnings about how to work with the police, and people who want your money; I also have experience pretending I know what I am doing, while really flying by the seat of my pants (or skirt). 

I believe that I can contribute to the climate of the firm itself.  By wearing Nine West pumps in an array of colors, I can provide a degree of fabulousness that other applicants cannot supply.  They also serve a dual purpose, because they are excellent for kicking Berka siblings, or unruly clients.  Because of my education and experience, I can also help the employees Berka Consulting.  I believe it would be beneficial to pursue Nine West as the official shoe sponsor.  It has been shown that non-monetary incentives have a positive impact on worker motivation, (Jenkins et al., 1998).   Pairing with Nine West could enable the creation of a “shoe bonus program” at no financial cost to the company.  I believe my sarcastic and dry sense of humor would allow me to maintain a judgmental attitude required by the E _ _J, and is one of the things that has enabled me to hang with the Berka Clan thus far. 

I also have a knack for cooking, and can make pizza and cookies for meetings should the need arise.  Given my entrance into the world of home brewing, we could have a signature “Berka Consulting” brew on tap at the office.  Beer helps in negotiation with clients, and it has been theorized that a small amount of beer is actually a performance enhancer, rather than a performance inhibitor (Deckert & Maneotis*, forthcoming; Sari and I are thinking about applying for a grant to actually test this empirically). 

As you can see, I have an array of talents that could be utilized to better Berka Consulting, Inc.  I am invested in and committed to the future of this organization.

Paige Deckert
PhD Anticipated 2014

*Authorship determined alphabetically

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Berka Consulting, Incorporated is a global business consulting group specializing in world-class organizational strategy, communication, process and innovation.  We strive to create and optimize best practices in order to gain efficiencies and results across all of our premiere clients. At Berka Consulting Inc., we revolutionize businesses, so they can revolutionize the world.
Job Description:
As a Senior Associate Consultant you will be responsible for developing and maintaining relationships with a wide breadth of clients.  You will collaborate to fuse cutting-edge business trends with sound traditional practices, offering unmatched resources and solutions for improving revenue cycles and business operations. Throughout all, you will exemplify the unmatched strategic acumen and vision integral to the mission of Berka Consulting, Inc. and the success of our clients.  Primary responsibilities include client ideation partnerships; strategy visioning sessions; process reform and roadmapping; target market immersions; and enterprise communication management.
Qualifications include Bachelor's Degree minimum and E _ _ J Myers-Briggs personality type. Mastery of business rhetoric, the English language and meaningless, yet impactful business analogies. Proficiency in audience persuasion; demonstrated knowledge of elementary business facts and principles; and leadership experience with manipulating group discussions and meetings. Experience in performing arts or public speaking and European accent highly desirable.
Job title:  Senior Associate Consultant
Position type:  Full Time, Employee
Job reference code:  2011-0002
Job category:  Consulting/Business Strategy/Performing Arts
Location:  Chicago , IL
Please submit a written application demonstrating your qualifications
Competetive applicants published as guest bloggers here.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The Jew, The Hindu, and The Blonde

About a year ago, two of my friends (really friend-acquaintances at the time, who both worked for the same massive corporation) and I had like revelations: We’re each 23, living alone in the armpit of America (central, IL). It was conservative, “family-oriented,” and it sucked. Hard.

We inventoried what we knew about each other:
  • Generally cool-enough people with whom to strike work friendships.
  • University of Illinois graduates (Read: Effing brilliant)
  • Geoff’s Jewish, Ujjval’s Hindu, Christy’s Blonde (sometimes with a capital “B”).

With perhaps a bit of a dice roll, we put our money on 7 and entered into a hilarious living arrangement.  Was it a sitcom, it would be some awesome fusion of The Bing Bang Theory, Three’s Company and The Office.

The pilot episode of The Jew, The Hindu, and The Blonde opens back when the Odd Trio decides to live together and signs a lease to their big new apartment.  Geoff and Christy con Ujjval, without Ujjval’s awareness, into occupying what is clearly the worst room.  Ujj remains indifferent when we decide to point out our coup.

Cut to the three of us chatting on the giant basement sectional, taking in the new scenery and cue Geoff’s actual quote, “Hey guys—You know how when you put a goldfish in a big tank, it gets bigger? Think that will be like us and friends?”

True to the tenor of the pilot and tone of the title, the ensuing Emmy-winning season would follow the threesome building a motley crew of friends and engaging in plenty of random hilarity.  And it would, of course, be sprinkled with derogatory slurs wrapped in impressive rhetoric. 

The Jew, The Hindu and The Blonde, Season 1 episode titles (all from true events):
  • The one where Berka bakes, and why it’s important to be cognizant of who you are telling to jump into an oven.

  • The one with all things “Ujjvallian,” and why a Marvel Comics poster and a futon fit so harmoniously in an otherwise barren room.

  • The one where Geoff defiles Berka’s cube to remove Cubs paraphernalia, and why childish Cardinals fans should be mindful of who knows where they sleep. 

  • The one where Berka eats an entire tub of cookie dough before Ujjval has a chance to bake any, and why Indians suck at booby-traps.

  • The one with the Little Blonde Buddha and why it’s much easier to give rather than follow sound relationship advice.

  • The one where Ujjval disses TBS, and why you can get away with saying things like that when you’re brown.

  • The one with all the domestic violence and why Berka’s nickname is Mike (Tyson).

  • The one with the Pajama Party, and why matching footie pajamas are a staple of every wardrobe.

  • The one with all the work-email banter, and why you should always be concerned about records retention and the “forward” button.

  • The one where the Blonde goes Ginger, and why Jewish people’s opinions never matter.

  • The one with the argument scoreboard, and why earnest chauvinism never wins a point.

  • The one with the Vegas Bombs, Buttery White Russians, and how only Indians are adept at intoxicating otherwise heavy-drinking blondes. 

  • The one with all the glamor muscles, and why roommates who never wear shirts are exiled to the dungeon. 

  • The one with the musical sing-a-long, obvious Aladdin typecasting, and why Geoff is a terrible tenor.

  • The one where Geoff and Ujjval participated in the same focus group, and why loose interpretation of the term “focus” is critical.

  • The one with all the animal nicknames, and why pandas are always down to party.

  • The one with all the Thirsty Thursdays, and why Friday mornings were never more regrettable.

  • The one with random jars of unpronounceable spices, and why eavesdropping on half-Hindi conversations is pointless.

  • The one with the SnowtoriousBIG, shovels, and how Ujjval learned the hard way that Bailey’s should always be kept in-stock.

  • The one with all the pizza, and why you should never underestimate the eating ability of former-fat-girls.

  • The one where loud-mouthed Jews make the best pitchers, and why vying for the win in work co-rec softball always leads to disappointment.
The Season 1 finale ends with a twist where the Blonde, being the least-likely suspect of the trio to leave central Illinois first, accepts an unexpected job offer in Chicago, gives two-weeks notice and packs her bags.  In order to engage in a lively send-off week of heavy drinking after a speeding ticket robs her of identification, she has her mother (who makes habit out of enabling her delinquent children) overnight her passport.  Identification problem solved, the fun week ends with a bittersweet goodbye.

The three acclaimed actors can’t be too sad, though.  They already know their contracts have been renewed for a second season, which is sure to bring more commutes, quarter-life crises and culture clashes.  At the risk of a wishful spoiler alert, maybe the Season 2 finale finds Jack, Janet and Chrissie in the same location, or dare I suggest the same apartment, again.

And because I know you’re wondering: Geoff is definitely Chrissie. Is Suzanne Somers Jewish? Irrelevant. I’m pretty sure he’s got a Thigh Master.

To Geoffrey and Ujjval—I will miss living with you guys.

Much love,
Christopher Robin; Little Blonde Buddha; Hamster