Consulting: Setting Clients Up for Success
When you are working as a consultant, you’re generally brought in for a specific project or task. Although you’re working with the client, most likely you are not a permanent member of their company. You have to go in with the mindset of setting your client up for success.
Even though you might be working yourself out of a job – it’s the right thing to do.
Think of it this way –integrity demands that you set your clients up for success even though you might not be a part of that success long term. That is what you are there for. You may have a special set of skills or be an expert in your field. They’ve called you in to get them or their project moving and on the right track –not to become reliant on you. You have to set them up for success long term.
This specifically means pulling people into meetings that weren’t in there before to get them involved. Once you create a process that works, you have to invite people in and demonstrate that process for them so they can continue it as successfully as you’ve started it. Then, once you start pulling necessary people in, they can begin to give input and see what the changes are. This gives them a window. You should also pull supports folks in so that they can see what’s happening and get the lay of the land. It’s about the success of the whole team. Then they are part of the process and they can give feedback and add things that maybe you didn’t think about.
There should be a part of your consulting process where you come up with a solution, put that solution in motion, bring in essential players to teach them the solution, and then let them add their thoughts and feedback to tweak the solution to make it better. Maybe it’s not exactly you’re original idea, but with some great collaboration it can be even better. Especially when these people are the ones that will be supporting it long term. It’s always a good idea to take thoughts from each then and built a great idea together.
Great collaboration is when you invite the RIGHT players to the meeting – not more players, the right players. Setting up your clients for success that eventually phases you out is not an easy thing to do, but it is the right thing to do. At that really speaks to a successful track record for you as a consultant. Consider it as a supporting role. You are the back up; the special team. You come in, execute a great plan, and set them up for success moving forward.
What have you found to be the hardest part of setting clients up for success is? Do you find most consultants doing this process? Or instead creating clients who are reliant on them long term? What are your thoughts? Comment below!
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