Great Consulting Challenges: And How to Surmount Them / Edition 1by Alan Weiss
Pub. Date: 12/26/2002
Great Consulting Challenges: And How to Surmount Them shows how consultants can use the wisdom gleaned from Weiss's own practice and from other seasoned members of the profession to help overcome persistent problems and next-level challenges. Weiss explains that as consultants' careers develop and become more sophisticated and complex, so do the/i>… See more details below
Great Consulting Challenges: And How to Surmount Them shows how consultants can use the wisdom gleaned from Weiss's own practice and from other seasoned members of the profession to help overcome persistent problems and next-level challenges. Weiss explains that as consultants' careers develop and become more sophisticated and complex, so do the challenges they encounter. For example, the question of price competition occurs at every level of the consulting business, yet the techniques for astutely resolving the issue can be vastly different for the veteran consultant as compared to the novice who is merely trying to establish a new business. In this book, Alan Weiss discusses the great consulting challenges in key areas such as marketing, selling, delivery, and practice management and offers practical advice for overcoming common problems and learning to thrive as a consultant.
Table of Contents
PART ONE: Marketing Challenges.
CHAPTER 1: Lack of Industry Experience.
Aren't You a Stranger in These Parts?
How to Apply Process Skills in a Sales Situation.
CHAPTER 2: Too Narrow a Niche.
Is It Me, or Are the Walls Getting Closer?
The Signs of "Nichedom".
Escaping the Niche Without Destroying It.
The Generalization of Specialization.
CHAPTER 3: Relative Lack of Resources.
How Does a Lone Wolf Create Galloping Herds?
CHAPTER 4: The Cost of Distant Marketing.
Where, Exactly, Is Lower Kumquat?
Ten Reasons to Go No Matter What.
When Can You Charge for the Privilege?
CHAPTER 5: Poor Name Recognition.
If You're So Good, How Come I Never Heard of You?
What Is Name Recognition?
Why Bother with Name Recognition?
Five Techniques to Achieve Name Recognition.
CHAPTER 6: Pipeline Dry.
Doesn't It Ever Rain Around Here Anymore?
Understanding the Pipeline.
Five Ways to Fill the Pipes.
CHAPTER 7: Economic Downturns or Uncertainty.
Sailing Through Conflicting Winds and Tides.
CHAPTER 8: No Interest After the First Contact.
Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?
Why Don't People Return Your (Frantic) Calls?
What to Do When There's Just an Echo of Your Own Voice.
CHAPTER 9: Differentiation Difficulties.
If It Walks Like a Duck....
The Progression of Differentiation.
CHAPTER 10: Poor or Outmoded Positioning.
Too Much Same Old, Same Old.
How To Get into a Really Comfortable Position.
How to Detect and Recover from Poor Positioning.
PART TWO: Sales Challenges.
CHAPTER 11: Price Competition.
I Can Name That Song in One Note.
The Ten Deadly Sins of Creating Your Own Price Competition.
The Dimension of Price.
CHAPTER 12: Requests for Proposals (RFPs).
If This Is a Request, Then What Would a Demand Be?
How to Circumvent RFPs.
Winning the RFP.
CHAPTER 13: Intimidation.
Killing Me Softly with His Song....
The Secrets of Self-Esteem and "Unintimidateability".
CHAPTER 14: Getting Business at the Wrong Price.
Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?
The Dreadful Causes of Under-Pricing.
Arcane Science: How to Recover from a Fee That's Too Low.
CHAPTER 15: Gatekeepers and Blockers.
Or Why Ayn Rand Was Right All Along.
How to Avoid the Gatekeeper Altogether.
Three Ways to Get Past Gatekeepers.
CHAPTER 16: Elongated Closing Times.
How Long Is It Till "the Cows Come Home"?
Accelerating the Close.
When Time Drags on Remorselessly.
CHAPTER 17: No Response/No Return Calls.
Hello, Earth...Hello, Earth....
Ensuring a Response.
When to Hold and When to Fold.
CHAPTER 18: Poor "Pitch".
ANY Pitch Is a Poor Pitch.
What Do You Say After You Say, "Hello"?
What to Do if the Pitch Is Required Anyway.
CHAPTER 19: Relegation to Lower Levels.
The Ones That Get Away.
Never Voluntarily (or Involuntarily) Leave the Buyer.
CHAPTER 20: Poor Follow-Up.
Keep a-Knockin' but You Can't Come In.
Establishing Effective Follow-Up Strategies.
The Most Surprising Tactic with Leads.
PART THREE: Delivery Challenges.
CHAPTER 21: Undermining the Project.
With Friends Like These, Who Needs Enemies?
Co-Opting the Buyer.
When the Buyer Is the Saboteur.
CHAPTER 22: Scope Creep.
There's a Fungus Among Us.
How to Stop Scope Creep.
Some Other Aspects of the Fungus.
CHAPTER 23: International Challenges.
He Must Be Happy; He's Shouting at Me.
The Most Critical Challenges.
Advantages You Might Not Have Thought About.
CHAPTER 24: Abrupt Client Change and Trauma.
Come On, Let's All Sing "Kumbaya".
First Response (Get the Emergency Vehicles Rolling).
Subsequent Responses (Organize the Resources).
CHAPTER 25: Project Failure.
Why Projects Fail.
What to Do when the Project Fails.
CHAPTER 26: The Client Doesn't Implement.
What Was It About "Don't Do That" That You Didn't Understand?
Why Bad Things Happen to Good Consultants.
Leading the Client Through the Swamp.
And if the Client Doesn't Implement Anyway....
CHAPTER 27: Political Agendas.
Welcome to the Front Lines, and Keep Your Head Down.
The Hallmarks of a Political Maelstrom.
What to Do About Overwhelming Political Agendas.
When Politics Emerge Suddenly.
CHAPTER 28: No Agreement on Progress or Contribution.
What Have You Done for Me Lately?
The Surprising Origin of the Challenge.
How to Handle a Derailment.
CHAPTER 29: Lip Service Support.
Do As I Say, Not As I Do.
Why Lip Service Managers Act That Way.
How to Change Lip Service to "At Your Service".
The Hallmarks of Lip Service.
CHAPTER 30: Project Management Challenges.
When Bad Things Happen to Good Projects.
ADifferent View of Project Management.
PART FOUR: Practice Management Challenges.
CHAPTER 31: Cash Flow.
If You Took the Risks, Reap the Rewards.
Maximizing Personal Margins.
The Bottom Line on the Bottom Line.
CHAPTER 32: Learning and Growth.
If You're Not Moving, Someone's Passing You.
The Elements of Lifelong Learning: Process.
Four Dimensions of Continual Learning.
CHAPTER 33: Slow Payment.
Try to Tell the Bank That the Mortgage Payment Will Be There Eventually.
Ten Steps Toward Educating the Bill Payer.
Additional Air Cover.
CHAPTER 34: Overhead and Margins.
It Ain't What You Make, It's What You Keep.
Overhead Is Anathema to This Business.
Why You Should Never Hire People.
How to Subcontract Successfully.
CHAPTER 35: Theft of Intellectual Property.
Imitation Is the Sincerest Form of Flattery and Fraud.
What Is Rightly Ours?
The Rudiments of Protection.
When to Protect and When to Share.
CHAPTER 36: Illness and Disability.
I Think I Just Fell Off the Treadmill.
CHAPTER 37: Travel and Quality of Life.
See the Pyramids Along the Nile....
How to Travel Like a King.
Selfishness About the Quality of Your Life.
CHAPTER 38: Tax Problems.
They Keep Telling Me It's a Good Problem to Have.
The Absolute Need to Spend Pre-Tax Dollars.
Specific Tax Recommendations.
CHAPTER 39: State-of-the-Art Changes.
Where Did You Get That Stuff?
Fad vs. Trend.
The Halls of Shame and Fame.
CHAPTER 40: Life Goals and Balance.
Work Supports Life, Not Vice Versa.
There Is No Perfect Balance.
The Road from Here.
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