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#61: Effectively Passing Off Your Recommendations

Posted By Mark Haas CMC FIMC, Monday, June 01, 2009
How can I increase my ability to get my recommendations implemented?

Passing from recommendation to implementation can be a complicated process. However, there are a few components that consultants frequently forget to manage well. Let's assume that your recommendations are on target in terms of defining the correct approaches and your recommendations are well articulated. At this point, the control of implementation starts to pass away from you to the client. After you pass off your recommendations, your influence over outcomes depends on specifying the implementation steps your clients should take.

The key concept is "responsibility flow," in which you define the sequential responsibilities and accountabilities for implementing, evaluating and operating those functions you have recommended. Answer the following questions. Who have you worked with during your development of recommendations who really understands their rationale? Who has the client designated to manage the actions you recommended? Who will be accountable for performance? What processes will be used to evaluate whether the recommended actions are "better" than existing ones? How will the recommended actions displace existing functions? Who are the enablers and resistors?

Tip: Assuming you are not retained to manage and evaluate implementation, work with your client to specify in detail the responsibility flow for initial implementation, operation, evaluation, realignment and integration. Far too many high potential consultant recommendations die a slow (or quick) death and dissipate as "the way it always was" reasserts itself. Help your clients understand that implementation and integration are where value is created and that working with you on responsibility flow is an important part of your engagement.

© 2009 Institute of Management Consultants USA

Tags:  client service  consultant role  consulting process  implementation  recommendations 

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