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Delivering to clients is the most important thing you do as an external consultant. Everything else--the selling and the fighting to win the contract--stands for nothing if you fail to deliver outstanding results time and time again. To keep your reputation intact, delivering to time, quality, and budget is the very least that you must achieve. To ensure that clients remain enthusiastic about what you can offer them, you must deliver effective project management throughout the consulting assignment. Set milestones to check on performance regularly, and implement monitoring and control systems. Keeping motivated and focused will also be a challenge, particularly if the project is lengthy and demanding. It is unlikely that everything will run smoothly. You may experience difficulties that push you to the limit. But all is not lost. The way that you handle problems will be the deciding factor as to whether you gain repeat business or not. Most of all, as an external consultant, you are an agent for change. Improving the way that clients operate, and securing real gains for them, can only be achieved if change is managed appropriately. Making your proposals work is the real test. Your ideas may be brilliant, but unless you can make them workable, they'll remain a paper exercise. Your reputation will ultimately depend upon the real benefits that you bring to clients.

Learning Objectives
  • Managing Consulting Projects
  • Recognize the benefits of managing projects more effectively.
  • Setting Milestones
  • Identify the key reasons for setting milestones.
  • Monitoring and Control Systems
  • Predict the outcome of a given consulting assignment using a Gantt chart.
  • Keeping Motivated and Focused
  • Managing and Resolving Problems
  • Recognize the benefits of resolving difficulties quickly and effectively.
  • Sources of Friction
  • Distinguish between typical sources of friction in consulting assignments.
  • Problem-solving for Consultants
  • Characterize the different parts of an Ishikawa diagram.
  • Make an appropriate recommendation to resolve problems for a specific consulting project, using an Ishikawa diagram.
  • The Consultant as Change Agent
  • Recognize the benefits of implementing and maintaining change as part of the role of an external consultant.
  • Identifying Resistance to Change
  • Differentiate between the internal and external reasons why change is resisted.
  • Overcoming Resistance to Change
  • Use appropriate methods for overcoming resistance to change in a specific scenario.
  • Analyzing the Need for Change
  • Distinguish between the resistors and drivers for change.
  • Use force field analysis to determine the effects of drivers and resistors in a specified consulting assignment.
  • Bringing About Change
  • Use force field analysis to determine the effects of drivers and resistors in a specified consulting assignment.
  • Audience

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