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Consultant: Pro or Con?


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Before you rely on one consultant or another.

Published in: Leadership & Management
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Consultant: Pro or Con?

  1. 1. Consultant: Pro or Con? As Glinda the Good Witch said to Dorothy, “The Munchkins want to know, are you a good consultant or a bad consultant.” To which Dorothy replied, “I’m not a consultant at all…….” “The Munchkins are laughing because, you see, I am a consultant. Only bad consultants are mean and ugly.” Years back, I did a short stint as a teacher. On parent teacher night, Mrs. Parent came in because she was not pleased with her son’s performance on his first math test. Mrs. Parent was not accusatory. She did not lay blame. In fact, it was worse. Apparently she must have attended one of those “How to talk to your child’s teacher.” Programmes held by the Social Service Ladies in the basement of the Community Centre. “I’m not saying it’s your fault.”
  2. 2. “I’m not blaming you.” But…. “Perhaps because you are a new teacher you haven’t acquired all the skills you need.” “I’m sure you’re a very intelligent person and you will make a good teacher.” Now, I heard this rhetoric before Mrs. Parent was born. Which is why I said, “First of all, Mrs. Parent, the first test of the year is a review of last year’s work. This way I can tell how much the students remember, so I can be sure everyone is on the same page.” “Second, the first 2 or 3 questions are always easy questions. This is to help the students’ confidence so they don’t have any math anxiety.” Now…God is with me. And I can say that because this is a Parochial School and there is much less censorship. Not is what we are not allowed to say, but less of what we are required to say. Which means I can tell you, Mrs. Parent came in with Mrs. Friend and Miss
  3. 3. Daughter. I said to Miss Daughter, “What grade are you in?” She replied, “Sixth”. I wrote the first problem on the board and handed her a piece of chalk. She solved the problem. I turned to Mrs. Parent. “Now, your friend’s daughter solved the problem and she’s only in the sixth grade. And this is the beginning of the year, so she didn’t get to some of this material yet, so she learned it in the 5th grade. And she didn’t know there would be a test tonight, so she didn’t study for it. There is no excuse for your son getting this question wrong.” She thanked me and they left. Long story short. “My parents had me up til 3 in the morning. They didn’t cut me no slack. [Any slack. He’s not listening.] They didn’t cut me no slack. I got to bring my grades up. The Mrs. Parent’s cherub turned out to be one of my best students. If he wasn’t the top 3 he was the top 2. I can’t say he was my number one student because every student in the class has the right to think that he or she is the best student in the class. Where would that student have ended up if I listened to the product of bad advice?
  4. 4. Consulting In teaching there came the incumbent returning to college to be certified to teach. One of the courses was a curriculum development course. We were divided into groups and had to teach the class a “lesson plan” that could be used in class. Two of us were non-traditional students. We were returning to school. The others were younger. Needless to say, we were unprepared. (Crisis). The professor sent us out of the room to prepare to present our lesson. We were not ready. What to do? Well, the purportedly hysterical member of the group said, “Let’s go back in, tell the Professor we’re not ready, do our lesson next week, and take a drop in grade. (The paradigm du jour.) I said, “No, we’re going to go back and teach a lesson.” “We can’t write up a lesson in 5 minutes.” “We don’t have to. The class will do our lesson.” “I don’t understand what you’re talking about. We can’t…”
  5. 5. The rest of the group, in a panic over a one letter grade demerit, became my allies. ;-) “We’re not going to write the lesson. The class is going to write the lesson. Our lesson is going to be “How to Write a Lesson Plan.” I will give the introduction. You, tell the class, they have to decide on a lesson. [The objective of the team] You tell the class, they have to decide on the supplies. [Resources available or needed] You tell them, they have to come up with a procedure. [A Corporate plan or strategy] You tell them they have to decide on how to determine if the class learned the lesson. [Deliverables and Measurables] We went in, we delivered the lesson on how to come up with a lesson plan, they worked at developing a lesson plan—Nailed It! Losing neither face nor grade.
  6. 6. In your organisation, there will be those who are not focused on the goal. Others who become hysterical. Some, desperate, who will look to a leader. In a crime of crisis, the group will look to someone. That person may or may not be the boss. In either case, that person is the leader. “Leaders are defined by their followers.” “Look behind you. If people are following you, you’re a leader. If they’re not, you’re not.” “You can’t lead if you can’t manage.” The Quotations of Slim Fairview. © 2016. People seem to have little grasp of the concept. “A team is not a committee. A committee is not a team.” That is why I wrote:
  7. 7. Teamwork is for Teams Teamwork or a Team “Committees don’t solve problems, they cause them.” “More people, more words. More words, more bad.” In an article outlining how Emerging Nations could better deal with Industrialized Nations, I wrote: “There are only two reasons they [Industrialized Nations] want to “talk about it.” One, is to bully you into doing what they want you to do. The other, is to bully you into doing what you don’t want to do. In that article I outlined the tricks of Industrialized Nations. Those same tricks are used in the corporate world. The Section of the Article Emerging Nation Economic Union DO NOT SURRENDER POWER
  8. 8. Old Chinese Saying "Never underestimate the power of a symbolic gesture." The Quotations of Slim Fairview "The power of the symbolic gesture resides with the people making the gesture." WESTERN TRICKS TO CONTROL EMERGING NATIONS Click the above link to the article for a complete explanation. Also: Teamwork is for Teams Teamwork or a Team Warmest regards, Slim. Copyright © 2016 Bob Asken All rights reserved.