I’m stuck on a Management question and need an explanation.
100 words to each discussion
Client tips for buying consultancy
1) Take time clarifying the scope and deliverables
In any engagement between a client and consultant, communication is key. This is an important tip as client and the consultant may have different approaches of presenting the deliverables. Also, the scope of the engagement should be discussed so that the consultant is clear about the issue that he/she need to resolve.
As a consultant, I would utilize this tip to implement meetings for discussing key scopes and deliverables for the engagement with the client.
2) Don’t forget you have a choice
Sometimes a client may be under the pressure of higher management to solve an issue and may not end up being happy with the price they have to pay for hiring a consultant. This is an important tip as a client may have to evaluate the issue and decide to utilize a consultant who would provide the optimal service for the price offered.
As a consultant, I would utilize this tip to give the client confidence that they have not made a mistake by investing their money to resolve their problem and provide optimal service.
3) Expect a lot-but don’t expect miracles!
Clients need be aware that although consultants may be skilled in certain areas, they may not be able to correct the fundamental issues that took years of business problems to come about. Hence, this is an important tip as the client should expect innovative and interesting solutions from the consultants but at the same time keep their expectations reasonable.
As a consultant, I would utilize this tip to give clients advice and deliverables which are unique and useful and at the same time try to understand the fundamental issue even if it may not be resolved by me.
4) Keep an eye on who the consultants are talking to
As a client this is an important tip, as the client should be aware of who the consultants are speaking with in the organization. There can be issues of business sensitivities to starting of false rumors that the client needs to be careful about while letting the consultant work in the organization.
As a consultant, I would utilize this tip to understand what the client is comfortable with regards to my interaction in the organization.
5) Check the deliverables
Deliverables maybe tangible like a final report pointing out the problems and their solutions or intangible like skills that the staff have learnt through the course of the client-consultant engagement. This is an important tip for the client to remember as the deliverable should meet the sufficient level of quality, he/she expects and must be completed.
As a consultant, I would utilize this tip to get a feedback from the client if they are satisfied with the deliverables both tangible and intangible and what can be done to meet their level of expectations.
Among the 20 tips that chapter 15 mentions, those are the ones that I found to be most beneficial
- Tip 1 à Start with Why: when a consulting comes to a client with a proposal, is it crucial that whatever thing that you are saying makes sense (of course) and has a reason behind it. This is beneficial for the consultant, because it gives strength to his words, and makes the client believe that the project is really necessary. Having reasons to do things, makes it easier to sell your products and services. If I were to im0plement this, I would outline on each of the things that have to be done, a sub bullet point, explaining the reasons for it, and what to expect after the implementation.
- Tip 7 à Decide How much freedom the consultants will have: this is beneficial for both sides (the client and the consultants), and should be decided at the beginning of a project/deal. Since the consultants are going to be inside the company for a certain period of time, depending on the client, they wish that consultants do not have much freedom or maybe they give 100% flexibility for them to do whatever they want to do. No matter what the decision is, it is important that both parts are in agreement.
- Tip 8 à Expect a lot, but don’t expect miracles. This tip is pretty self-explanatory. Things are possible and happen to an extent. If you wish to be the new Facebook in the market, and make tons of money from one month to the other, forget it. This is a dream, and client’s need to be realistic about what consultants can do as well as their limitations.
- Tip 9 à Confirm Who is in the consultant Team. Chances are that you will not be working alone. Usually conu7sltants works in teams of 4-6 people. Before even starting the project, it would be beneficial to determine who will be in the team, and moreover, their duties. There will be things done together and shared, but it is important to limited each person’s function in the group.
- Tip 12 à Before Saying Yes, be clear about what happens afterwards. Sometimes we get excited about everything that people are offering us. It is important to take our time, and really analyze what things can bring to us. Saying yes to everything is not a possibility. Make sure that you understand everything that you are “sing up for” and what happen with each of them afterwards. If I were a consultant, I would make sure to show the begging and afterward of each part of the project and whatever that the client agreed on.
- Tip 14 à After deciding whatever that the project is going to be, it is time for the actual thing start. The consultant will be coming into your office, and is important to have everything ready for them. This will save time for both of you and will also help the team make progress faster and more efficiently. Make sure to have a space, desks, or even a room for them.