I have spent my entire working life in the arena of Consulting. I have worked for massive consulting firms and tiny ones that were just trying to make a name for themselves. For me, this encompasses 12 years of consulting experience and various projects, most of which have been in the area of HR.
Even though by saying “doing a great job is the most important thing” I’m stating the obvious – and no one will argue that is vital in any project or engagement - I honestly feel it’s actually the most important attribute that any consultant can bring to the table.
We have all worked with fellow consultants who, project after project, do a fantastic job that wows the client, and really puts the consultants’ company in the limelight. A lot of us have also either personally experienced or heard about projects that went wrong, and overnight have caused people to resign, have their career momentum shattered, or worse, ended up with an unshakeable negative reputation.
A lot goes into consistently doing a great job, and here are a few examples of what doing a great job does for a consultant and their company.
- A great job lessens the effort of the next sales cycle
- A great job makes good consultants feel satisfied with their work
- A great job helps mold, shape, and ultimately solidify a company’s reputation
- A great job builds up a consulting company’s “advisory capital” where the client is much more likely to really embrace their consulting partners’ advice on the next project
Imagine if there is nothing proprietary about the company you work for. No secret product or process. Imagine that you are batting close to a 1.000 on all of your projects. What do you think that does in the marketplace for the field that your company participates in?
I often ask myself what we can do as a company to continue doing a great job. I try to never lose sight of that because if you don’t do a great job, the consequences can be devastating:
- You don’t get the next deal
- You are totally displaced as a consulting partner
- Your reputation starts to erode and it hurts all other efforts and sales cycles you may be in
- Great consultants do not want to work for companies that don’t do a great job
This last point I can’t emphasize enough. Great consultants, the A-players of this world, want to work with other A-players. They want to know they are working for a company that does great work and emphasizes being great every day. It is very difficult to be consistently great, but the rewards are immense.