The Flawless Consulting Fieldbook and Companion: A Guide to Understanding Your Expertise / Edition 1

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A friend indeed!In this time of free agency, outsourcing, and cross-functional work teams, consulting has become a part of everyone's job. Plus, we live in an era in which we are forced to hire professionals to provide the help we used to seek from friends. Some of this need for instant expertise is for reassurance; some is just that we do not have time to learn it ourselves. So, despite all the ambivalence surrounding consulting, it has grown into big business and generally infiltrated our lives.The intent of this book is:

  • To support the integrity of your expertise
  • To change your mind about how you interpret your own consulting experience
  • To broaden your way of thinking
  • To bring a manageable dose of therapy and art, philosophy and literature into you thoughts about consulting, and
  • To so it in a comforting and simple way
Enjoy this book, let it accompany you into the field, and use it as encouragement for writing your own story, which may the point of it all.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is content as rich as tiramisu. I find that I can digest only a small portion at a time; yet I'm always back for more. An indispensable resource for the consultant seeking ideas and inspiration." (Kathryn Heath)

"Wow! A companion a business owner can't be without! The insights of 30 consultants the caliber of Peter Block is priceless." (Sue Mosby, principal, CDFM2 Architecture Inc)

"This book is a companion piece for both the desktop and bedside of those who do consulting full time or in their role as leader. I plan to keep this book close to me to both guide and inspire my work." (Phil Harkins, president, Linkage, Inc.)

"No matter how proficient, companies who fail to understand and apply Block's concepts risk operating at the vendor level with their clients rather than at the partner level-a potentially mortal risk in an increasingly strategic marketplace." (Fred Lamparter, director of worldwide training, Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide)

"As we encourage our IT professionals to pursue continuous learning, this 'Fieldbook' will be added to their skill-building toolkit. We've used Block's Flawless Consulting guidelines to define the basic consulting skills program." (Cassandra A. Matthews, vice president, Information Technology and CIO, PECO Energy Company)

"When it comes to prioritizing my reading, Peter Block is second only to the sports section. In this book, Peter provides different points of view and stories that plunge deeply into the human and organizational experience." (Paul Anderson, convener, Northern California School for Managing and Leading Change)

"Peter's work always challenges me to think about things in new ways and pushes me to take risks I might not have had the courage for otherwise. This long awaited companion to Flawless Consulting is no exception." (Jennifer Powell, human resources manager, Aetna USHealthcare)

"Peter Block and his friends have produced an indispensable companion to Flawless Consulting. Providing help to others is no easy task, but these philosophical, therapeutic, and artistic essays bring to life the spirit and hope of change practitioners everywhere. Ultimately, they deliver practical insights to the consulting craft." (Christopher G. Worley, director, MSOD Program, Pepperdine University)

"If you're new to consulting, or if you need reinforcement that relationships are the heart of successful consulting, read this book. More experienced professionals will find some real gems along the way like Peter's Twelve Exits. And where else will you find Sufi wisdom, Bertrand Russell, and Marvin Weisbord all under one roof?" (Rick Maurer, author, Beyond the Wall of Resistance and Building Capacity for Change Sourcebook)

"In Peter's characteristically accessible style, this complement to the recently revised Flawless Consulting skillfully challenges consultants to learn what moves us towards more accountability and to discover what releases the commitment and passion inherent to the experience of being human." (Gordon C. Brooks, MSOD program administrator, The Graziadio School of Business and Management, Pepperdine University)

'This book is a must read for anyone consulting or considering consulting. Peter has once again broken new ground with the Flawless Consulting Fieldbook and Companion." (Steve Gibbons, past president, The Association for Quality and Participation)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787948047
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 11/28/2000
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 480
  • Product dimensions: 7.99 (w) x 9.23 (h) x 1.32 (d)

Meet the Author

PETER BLOCK has been a consultant and speaker all over the world for more than thirty years. He is the founder of two well-know training and consulting firms, Designed learning and Block Petreall Weisbord, and the author of three best-selling books, Flawless Consulting (1981; 2000) The Empowered Manager (1987) and Stewardship (1993)). Peter has received several national awards for outstanding contributions to his field, is the creator of the Staff Consulting Workshops, and has joined with the American for Quality and Participation to create the School for Managing and Leading Change.

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Table of Contents

List of Figures and Exhibits vi

Welcome xi

Quick Guide to Contents xxi

1 No Fast and Easy Way 1

1 Flawless by M. J. Wheatley 5

2 A Sensible Oxymoron Andrea Markowitz 7

3 Risk Is Where You Find It Peter Block 13

4 The Journey Idries Shah 21

5 Consultant, Flawed: A Story of Eternal Internal Triangles Ken Murphy 23

6 The Power of Conversations at Work Joel Henning 43

2 The Complexity of Advice 65

7 What Should I Do? Peter Block 69

8 Four Communities Idries Shah 75

9 Changing Focus: Consulting in the New Economy Patrick Dolan 77

10 Be Careful Who You Ask: Perils of Wisdom Andrea Markowitz 81

11 Dealing with Resistance: Having the Right Conversation in Difficult Situations Phil Grosnick 89

12 The Case of Pricilla and the Red Pen Andrea Markowitz 97

3 The Power of the Question 117

13 Making the System Fully Known to Itself: Discovery As a Collaborative Process Jill Janov 125

14 Two Sides Idries Shah 135

15 Resolving a New Paradox with Old Wisdom Marvin Weisbord 137

16 Change Is in the Details Peter Block 149

17 Talk Is Walk: Language and Courage in Action Peter Koestenbaum 153

18 So, What's Working Here? A Conversation with Elizabeth McGrath 167

4 Emotions and the Personal 175

19 Balancing Competence with Consciousness: One Woman's Wisdom Rosemarie Barbeau 179

20 Nobody's Fool: Unconventional Guides for the Emotional Path Andrea Markowitz 187

21 In the Land of Fools Idries Shah 199

22 Up Front and Personal A Conversation with Charlotte Roberts 201

23 Women's Leadership Collaborative: Investing in Our Humanity Nancy Voss 209

24 Sneaking the Spirit In A Conversation with John Schuster 229

5 Valuing Capacities 237

25 Leading from Behind: Talking with Sled Dogs Sam Magill 241

26 Homeopathic Consulting: Learning Is Free, Teaching Is Not Cliff Bolster 249

27 Milk and Buttermilk Idries Shah 265

28 Consulting As Capability Building Lou Ann Daly 267

29 Getting Real John O'Connell 273

6 Integrating Strategy and Experience 287

30 The Engagement Paradigm: Changing the Way We Change Organizations Dick and Emily Axelrod 291

31 Caring about Place Peter Block 307

32 Unleashing the Spirit Kathie Dannemiller, Sylvia James, and Paul Tolchinsky 315

33 Nancy's Checklist Nancy Sanchez 329

34 Anonymous Data Collection? Definitely Yes and No Neale Clapp 331

35 Toward a More Participative, Productive Workplace Marie McCormick 339

36 Co-Creating a Community's Future: Once upon a Time in a Place Called Home David and Carole Schwinn 355

37 How Am I Doing? How Am I Doing? You Like Me! You Really Like Me! Peter Block 365

7 No Masks No Bargains 375

38 My Worst Consulting Nightmare Amy J. Katz 383

39 Three Nightmares A Conversation with Henry Johnson 389

40 Twelve Questions to the Most Frequently Asked Answers by Peter Block 393

Postscript 405

Thanks to Contributors 407

About the Author 427

Index 429

Flawless Consulting Workshops 441

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