My Expectations for Leadership Consultants (Why Consultants? Part II)
If you are a leadership consultant, then the reason I would hire you would be to provide me or my organization with expertise. I expect the following from you:
1. Real Ideas.
When I want to learn something, I look for someone with knowledge or experience. If you have knowledge in a specific niche, advertise it.
This year, I have paid consultants to teach me about Twitter and LinkedIn. On a dozen other subjects, I have read books to access the knowledge that other people have to share. The things that I have learned are extremely valuable to me, and I was able to learn them much more quickly because a consultant provided me with a guided education.
2. Skilled Analysis.
To take your consulting to the next level, a leadership consultant needs to be capable of looking at my organization and identifying what I need to change.
I frequently provide skilled analysis for my clients. As an attorney, it is very easy for me to identify legal issues that a business may need to address. As a business consultant, I frequently tell new clients that they need better accounting and other data management systems. As a result of my experience, I can very quickly help a company focus on the things that will make them more successful.
3. Effective Tools.
Another value-adding element for a leadership consultant is a big bag of tools. If a consultant is going to tell me that I need to improve in a particular area, then I will also expect him to be able to show me how to improve in that area.
Software is one way that a leadership consultant can increase his effectiveness. Software is a tool that makes doing a job easier to envision and easier to carry out.
Any “system” can be offered as a tool by a leadership consultant. In both life and business, everything is accomplished by following a specific process. Our success is the product of the action we take. Superior processes for taking action produce superior results.
4. Ability to Deliver.
I have fired more consultants than most people have hired. The reason they have been fired is always the same: they fail to deliver.
Nothing is worse than a consultant claiming that he has expertise, but who can’t deliver any tangible result. The inability to deliver is my definition of a poor leader. What is a consultant selling if he doesn’t have powerful ideas, the ability to apply them to a client, and the tools to produce results?Read the rest of this series: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4