ELI 816_Week4_Discussion 4: Client Relations


ELI 816_Week4_Discussion 4: Client Relations
A consultant manages client relations and expectations.
How does the consultant effectively achieve those goals? Can you share personal experiences, either as a consultant or a client?
Your post must be at least 300 words, formatted and cited in proper APA style with support from at least 2 academic sources
Module 4 Overview

• Disengaging
• Testimonials and References
• Coaching and Facilitating
• Conflict Resolution and Negotiating
• Teams and Groups

Learning Outcomes
By the end of this week, students will be able to:
o Evaluate the process of developing, establishing, and marketing consulting services; the functions of consulting; and consulting practices and

o Examine key factors and concepts related to consulting engagements, and assess and integrate the interrelationships.
o Evaluate and present assessment of issues and organizational challenges from the perspective of a consultant.
o Assess and align individual strengths, weaknesses, knowledge, skills, aptitudes, and goals with consulting opportunities and the processes and

interventions involved in the consulting domain.

Read & Review
• Weiss (2011): Chapters 9–11
• Week 4 PowerPoint
• Week 4 Lecture Notes

Module 4 Lecture Notes
Developing Skills for Successful Consulting
• Essential Skills for Strategy Consulting
o Impeccable researching skills (desk research, telephone interviewing, and face-to-face)
o Outstanding analysis and synthesis skills (e.g., the ability to delve into deep data analysis and then synthesize the key messages, or the “so

o Excellent written communication (to produce Word and PowerPoint reports)
o Strong PowerPoint presentation creation (essential for developing client presentation packs late at night!)
o Commitment to delivering excellent client service (i.e., the desire to put in the long hours when you have to ensure a quality deliverable for

the client)
• Consultancy Skills Development
o Independence
o Understanding
• The Five Fatal Flaws of Consulting
1. The project is defined in terms of the consultant’s expertise or products, not in terms of the specific client results to be achieved.
2. The project’s scope is determined solely by the subject to be studied or the problem to be solved, ignoring the client’s readiness for change.
3. The project aims for one big solution rather than incremental successes.
4. The project entails a sharp division of responsibility between client and consultant; there is no partnership between them.
5. The project makes labor-intensive use of consultants instead of leveraged use
The 10 Commandments of Consulting
0. Concentrate continually on delivering client value.
1. Commit all stakeholders to action.
2. Clarify complex client issues.
3. Communicate authentically.
4. Collaborate with the client.
5. Conduct a “willing and able” assessment.
6. Control scope creep.
7. Compress the cycle time of delivery.
8. Customize each solution.
9. Continually learn and grow.
Consultants Must Have These Four Capabilities
o Technical expertise
o Relationship skills
o Engagement management
o Business acumen
The Consulting Process
o Relationship skills
o Contracting
o Assessment
o Delivery
o Feedback
o Solution & design
o Integration
o Closure & renewal
Business Acumen Success Elements
o See the bigger strategic issues facing the client.
o Be able to define business solutions.
o Possess process knowledge of the functional area of the business and industry sector.
o Define change management issues.
o Understand the competitive landscape.
o Provide relevant skills, strategies, tools, and ideas to the client.
o Use knowledge and experience to build strong rapport and sustainable relationships with the client.
Six Elements in Building Strong Consulting Relationships
o Decorum
o Commonality
o Empathy
o Credibility
o Value
o Trust
o Open probe – When you want to allow the client to respond freely to gain general information or when you want to encourage expansion
o Closed probe – When you want to limit the client’s response to uncover specific information or when you want to confirm your understanding
The Four I’s Probing Strategy
o Issues
o Importance
o Impact
o Investigate