The Ask/Tell Matrix is a tool used to classify different types of consulting projects based on two factors:

The four types of consulting according to the Ask/Tell Matrix are:

1. Expert Advice

In an expert advice project, the client has a well-defined problem and is looking for the consultant to provide a solution. The consultant's role is to use their expertise to diagnose the problem and recommend a course of action.

2. Collaborative Problem Solving

In a collaborative problem solving project, the client and consultant work together to define the problem and develop a solution. The consultant's role is to provide guidance and expertise, but the client ultimately owns the solution.

3. Process Improvement

In a process improvement project, the consultant helps the client to improve their existing processes. This may involve identifying and eliminating inefficiencies, developing new procedures, or implementing new technology.

4. Transformation

In a transformation project, the consultant helps the client to make major changes to their organization, such as expanding into a new market, launching a new product line, or implementing a new business model. The consultant's role is to help the client develop a strategy for change and to manage the implementation process.

The Ask/Tell Matrix can be used by consultants and clients to select the right type of consulting project for their needs. It can also be used to manage expectations and ensure that both parties are clear on their roles and responsibilities.

Here are some examples of each type of consulting project:

Expert Advice:

Collaborative Problem Solving:

Process Improvement:


The Ask/Tell Matrix is a simple but powerful tool that can be used to understand and manage different types of consulting projects. By understanding the four types of consulting projects, consultants and clients can better align their expectations and achieve their desired outcomes.