ELSAM MANAGEMENTCONSULTANTS Weekly newsletter Understanding a Consultant and Consulting skillsAbstractConsulting is the process of giving advice or performs other services ofprofessional or semi-professional manner in return for compensation. Inconsulting you are boss of your own as you pick your own hours of work bydeciding when you work and when you do not. In consulting you decide whomyou wish to work for and whom you do not work for, as well as whom you doand do not work with. Also in consulting, you set your own fees. This articleprovides basic understanding of the consulting, consultant and consultingskills for every person who wants to make an incredible business of consulting.IntroductionWho is a consultant?Consultant is anyone who gives advice or performs other services of aprofessional or semiprofessional nature, in return for compensation. Anyperson can become a consultant regardless of the area of interest or expertisethis is because everyone has unique background, with special experiences andinterests which are in demand by certain individuals or companies at certaintimes. A consultant can be an individual, a group or an organization. Anyconsultant is there to give advice to the client concerned without exercisingdirect control to the client as the client is the one who has final say on thematter in hand. To be a consultant you need the following: 1. Build an effective relationship with client As a consultant you need to understand who the client is, and understand their business issues, goals and priorities. Always understand who is your real client, the culture within which the client’s works and what factors are influencing his/her decisions or behaviors.
2. Understand each client’s current needs from business, technical and personal perspectives. As a consultant always strive to see the world through client’s eyes. You should always think beyond what client is thinking so that you can get more confidence from the client 3. Clearly define both your role and that of the client. Being a consultant you should always set your expectations related to the services you are going to perform and ways forward to accomplish the assignment. You should always be clearly on what you will do and what you will not do and what to expect from the client. 4. Visualize success- shave a vision for the results you are working to achieve. As a consultant you should make sure you make the client have the mental picture of his/her desired results of the engagement, this will help to bring a common goal shared vision between a consultant and client. 5. Coach and advice on issues and solutions. Let the client decide. As a consultant your great job is to bring about issues to your client and to seek a way forward to the solutions of those issues, the client is always the one who will have the final say on the solutions given. A consultant job is only to advice and never takes the direct control. 6. Be action and results-oriented; deliver business results. Being a consultant you must help your clients reach their project-related goals. This means getting positive results and creating new possibilities for client success.CONSULTING SKILLSConsultant needs to have a broad set of skills and styles to get the job done.Consultants must be adaptable, flexible and multitalented as the way to deliverservices to their clients. These are some of the most skills that a consultantneeds to have in a way of doing a consulting work: 1: Bedside manner; this refers to how you get along with your client, bytaking much consideration on how you talk to your client. As a consultant youhave to have a pleasant bedside manner, so that your clients have confidencein what you say. 2: The ability to diagnose problems; as an outstanding consultant youneed to have the ability to diagnose the problem correctly so that you will be
able to solve your clients’ problem than adding to the problem your clientalready have. 3: The ability to find solutions; a consultant needs to diagnose theproblem correctly this will help him/her to recommend the proper actions tocorrect the situations the clients have. 4: Technical expertise and knowledge; consultant needs to havetechnical expertise which comes from his/her education, experience and thepersonal skills developed, the technical expertise and knowledge will help aconsultant to make a major contribution to the benefit of their clients. 5: Communication skills; the best way to succeed in any consultant jobis to learn how to communicate with your client in all proper means possible.Poor communication always will lead to failure to deliver the best service yourclient need from you. A good consultant is the one who knows and have thatability to communicate with his/her clients. 6: Marketing and selling ability; as a consultant you have to learn to bea good marketer and a good sales person. Any consultant has to sellhimself/herself, so the best way to sell you as consultant is learned within aperiod of time 7: Management skills; as a consultant you need to be a good managerin how you manage the whole consulting business and run various clientsproject. This skill can be learned within time, for someone to be an outstandingconsultant has to learn how to manage a consulting business and variousproject.Lastly as a consultant the first thing is having analytical skills, second; youneed to be sensitive to others, then; a consultant need to be tolerance toconsulting lifestyle, which may require intensive hours of work on someprojects, finally a consultant needs to have a strong personal drive to besuccessful.Prepared by Grace Godfrey, Business Consultant at Elsam Management Consultants. You maycontact her for more details through email@example.com