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#603: How Close Should You Get to Your Client?

Posted By Mark Haas CMC FIMC, Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Updated: Wednesday, July 6, 2011
We are proud of our work advising clients on HR related issues (hiring, talent management, training, performance evaluations, etc.) but as much as we consider ourselves "part of the team" in their growth and improvement, we don't get the recognition from them we think we merit. How do we get it?

First of all, recognize that you are advisors to your clients, not part of their team. Consultants may humorously refer to "going native" because of being engaged with a client too long, but our ability to maintain our objectivity and independence is critical to our value. You should be proud of your contributions to the client but may want to question whether your priority should be validation and inclusion as "part of the team.".

Second, wanting to be recognized for your contributions is reasonable, but why does it have to be only from your client. Sure, you want feedback from your sponsor that your efforts are making a positive impact on the client condition. However, there are ways to be recognized by your peers, within your team and by your profession that can be as much, if not more, valuable to you (if you will let them).

Tip: Consider whether you are seeking validation from your client in appropriate ways. Just as clients value you highly for your objectivity in providing them advice, you benefit from clients showing that same objectivity in evaluating your performance.

© 2011 Institute of Management Consultants USA

Tags:  attribution  client relations  client service  consultant role  goodwill  professionalism 

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