For consultants who facilitate: dealing with group dynamics
We just completed our second delivery of BossaNova’s Advanced Facilitation Skills for Consultants program. We saw once again that a consultant’s biggest fear when it comes to facilitating client events is, hands-down, dealing with difficult group dynamics – you know, managing the client who’s overly talkative, highly argumentative, prone to ramble, stubbornly skeptical, and the like.
11 rules to consult by
We were recently asked to create a Consulting 101 for a group of IT executives at a very big company. In today’s blog, we share the eleven “Rules to Consult By”, a distilled list that represents what the best of the best in consulting practice on a regular basis. Here we’ve turned it into a short self-assessment. See how you do! Be honest.
Consulting and the art of self-deprecation
Today’s blog brings humor to your desktop (or PDA), along with some perspective on what consultants can learn from comedians.
According to Wikipedia.com, comedians use self-deprecating humor “to avoid seeming arrogant or pompous and to help the audience identify with them.” Sounds like a good strategy for anyone looking to build trust and rapport with another human being. Sounds like an especially good strategy for anyone in the consulting profession. Ask any client who has worked with consultants over the years – they’ll have at least a few horror stories to tell about the Big Important Expert they hired. That creates messes we are all left to clean up.
Consulting made funny?
“Think improv comedy is just for laughs? Think again. It’s fertile training ground for dealing with the unexpected – you know, like in a sales conversation, when a client asks a zinger that you never saw coming. I discovered the magic of improv comedy a few years ago when I decided it was time to learn how to get past the “frozen-ness” I felt when something like that happened to me.
Why consultants speak like idiots
I have always been simultaneously amused and utterly appalled by consultant-speak, particularly when I hear it coming out of my own mouth. You know the buzz words. They’re everywhere, buried inside complex sentences like snakes nestled in the underbrush:
– “The key to success for your organization is to discern how to leverage your assets for maximum return.” (Nowhere in Merriam-Webster is “leverage” a verb).