Home / Consulting Best Practices

Consulting Best Practices

Does Ethical Consulting Pay?

Ethics and business—are they are at odds with each other? They certainly do not have to be. Mark Haas discusses this in a post for the Institute of Management Consultants USA. In the first place, consultants should always operate in a legal manner. But beyond that, there is growing data to support the notion that better ethics means better business. For instance, people are willing to pay a premium for products that were ethically sourced. …

Read More »

Don’t Let Your Orders Confuse People

In a post at Consulting 101, Lew Sauder describes an old boss who was exceptionally bright and business-inclined, but he always gave vague orders that subordinates could not interpret. Sauder estimates that perhaps this boss was so bright that he thought the things he was asking for were obvious, but to lesser mortals, that was not truly the case. The takeaway is that it is important for you to give people orders on a level …

Read More »

Should You Discontinue a Service or Product?

A service that helped you in the earlier days of your consultancy may not be as useful now that you are more seasoned and have a more specific business growth direction in mind. In a post for the Institute of Management Consultants USA, Mark Haas explains how to approach discontinuing a service or product. He says to be weary of discontinuing services that clients are actively using now, because it will clearly cause financial and …

Read More »

A Personal Weakness Assessment

Everyone loves to receive a sincere compliment. Not as many people love open criticism, not even of the constructive kind. But knowing your weaknesses is valuable knowledge, because it gives you starting points for self-improvement. In a post at Consulting 101, Lew Sauder describes how to conduct your own weakness assessment. He estimates you can probably find five or six main weaknesses on which to focus, and you should conduct an HR-like process of scrutiny: …

Read More »

Don’t Discount Expert Knowledge Just Because You Disagree with It

Numbers do not lie, but people might. As such, too many people right now over-emphasize their distrust of people and deemphasize trust of people’s data. This is leading to expert knowledge and experience being disregarded for bad reasons. A post at Consultants Mind relays this message and discusses its implications for consultants. It also categorizes the different ways that inaccurate or close-minded attitudes can lead to the “death of expertise.” Ultimately, the only way to …

Read More »

3 Tiny Tips for Success as a Consultant

In an article for CNBC, Lisa Ferber shares the insights of social media consultant Natalie Zfat, who works with big names like Mark Cuban and the Food Network. Zfat offers three basic tips for consultants to embody, and the tips are illustrated by her experiences. The first tip is to take risks: You must put yourself “out there” and allow vulnerability as you pursue new contacts or try new things. The second tip is to …

Read More »

Why You Need to Know Your Ideal Client

Hypothetically speaking, what does your ideal client look like? What position is this client in that makes you perfectly suited to help? If you do not know the answer, that could be a problem. In a post at Consulting Success, Michael Zipursky explains why it is so important to pin down the silhouette of your ideal client. Targeted Work Essentially, it boils down to the amount of effort involved. When you know your ideal client …

Read More »

Do You Copy the Right People?

Email is like snow. It accumulates and accumulates until you would rather just stay inside and not be bothered with it. In a post for Consulting 101, Lew Sauder discusses some good practices to apply on the subject of copying people on emails. For instance, while it is common to copy a lot of people on an email when you are not sure which person has the information you need, you should slim down who …

Read More »

Do You Take Time to Save Time?

Habits make life less complicated. If you always drive the same way to work, then it requires less brainpower to get there because you are used to the drive. But what if you are driving using a poor route? What if you are not driving using a better route just because you do not want to have to learn a new routine? Lew Sauder poses this question in a post for Consulting 101, and it …

Read More »

Pushing Past Ego to Sell Your Professional Services

A few rotten apples can spoil the pie for everyone. In the case of consulting, it has developed a reputation for arrogance and annoying know-it-alls. In a post for the Institute of Management Consultants USA, Mark Haas describes how you can avoid coming off that way yourself. Basically, it comes down to being able to just stick to the facts. Tell prospective clients about the specific (terrific) results you generated for previous clients, and then …

Read More »