Consulting Best PracticesManagement

Consulting on the Bench: Still a Part of the Team

Everyone on a team matters, because everyone contributes to the whole, whether in business, sports, or life in general. Even when sitting on the sidelines, an individual’s contributions can be invaluable. In a post at his blog, Lew Sauder recounts how the bench is warm indeed for those consulting from off the front lines.

Bench Temperature Moderator, Really

Sauder’s son had spent most of his junior year of high school sitting on the bench during his team’s baseball games, a result of the coach wanting him to transition from catcher to pitcher. Some of his son’s friends did not even make the cut to join the team senior year, and Sauder supposed that it would probably be better to be cut right away than spend the year sitting on the bench. His son disagreed though, explaining that he had had all sorts of fun and insightful experiences as part of the team, even if he was not playing often himself.

Sauder took this information to heart when he was taken off a consulting project himself, and had been in the midst of feeling sorry for himself because his skills were in low demand with the manager who replaced him. Sauder realized there were still lots of little ways he could add value though, in spite of his minor position. For instance, he got together with some other “bench” consultants and put together a second release for an internal application used by their firm. Another thing Sauder did was recruiting:

Most consulting firms fuel their growth in three ways. They have to sell projects to clients to make money. They have to deliver those projects in order to bill the clients. And they have to hire competent people in order to deliver those projects. You can’t be good in only two of those areas.

So I kept my eyes open for anyone in my network who might be in the job market. When that happens and I’m busy on a project, I might refer them to my favorite head hunter or send their resume to our firm’s recruiter.

Thus, let this be a lesson to you that anyone can positively affect the bottom line, whether you are low man on the totem pole or you have fallen off the pole altogether. You can read the original post here:

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