I couldn't agree more. Indeed, I proposed that something similar would happen on Top Consultant back in 2002, when I returned to independent (or, as I prefer to call it, networked) consulting after five years in traditional employment. I have some further observations on how to achieve the model and would welcome your comments.
1) I find that there is an advantage in having specialist, rather than generalist, offerings. But as most experienced consultants have more than one skill, I find it best to have different vehicles through which I work. Hence I currently have three main involvements:
* Alban York Consulting (www.AlbanYork.com) specialises in helping businesses adapt to the euro
* Bankside Partners Limited (www.BanksidePartners.com) focuses on Financial Services
* Turner Projects Limited carries everything else.
2) I find IMC membership to be essential to operating in this way, as it provides the client with a independent quality control standard.
3) In my experience, the biggest difficulty is in persuading clients who are used to buying from a 'big name' to consider what a networked consultancy has to offer, particularly for larger projects. When we have that one cracked there is no limit to what we can achieve.
Alban York Consulting (www.AlbanYork.com)