Expert Consultant’s Manifesto

In becoming an expert consultant, you make a bold statement about your principles. With that in mind, here is the Expert Consultant’s Manifesto.
 

The Expert Consultant’s Manifesto

  1. You see that creating value for clients first depends on seeing value in oneself. The consultant who begins with confidence and love for their own expertise, skills, abilities and unique gifts will be the one who can go on to cultivate value for clients.
  2.  You will need courage, confidence and perseverance to stand on your own. You may sometimes have ideas that contrast with those of others and it may sometimes feel a bit isolated. But you can seek out community, work with clients who share your values and make small changes everyday, so that your work fits with your life – and you no longer have to work your life around your work.
  3.  Being true to your own principles and values will hold you in good stead as an expert consultant. In presenting innovation to clients, you will be able to speak with confidence if you know in your heart that your recommendations come from truth and what fits for you.
  4.  You become an expert consultant by virtue of learning and communicating what you know to others who need that information, are pressed for time or simply need an outside viewpoint. But as an expert, you recognize that you can never know everything and that being open to new ideas and constructive feedback will help in the end.
  5.  You have fantastic opportunities for growth as a consultant. You see you can start by embracing opportunities to innovate and value for clients while thoughtfully considering and evolving as the business world changes.
  6.  You have the opportunity to transform the world by synthesizing what you encounter and learn and by continuing to discover and advance.
  7.  You recognize that you can make the move to consulting in small steps or big ones and still be an expert consultant.
  8.  You have the right to work in an environment where you feel appreciated, valued and compensated and where your dignity and well being matter.
  9.  Your intrinsic resources – your gut feelings, values, self respect and needs – deserve your attention and must be safeguarded for life through careful planning and consideration.
  10.  Your capacity to produce amazing ideas and innovate change must be given opportunity to flourish, with an eye to avoiding feast or famine situations and with the aim of seeking opportunities to restore and improve.
  11.  You eschew working on spec, because it creates a process based on winning the client’s fancy, rather than making recommendations based on sound principles.
  12.  You know business still depends on handshakes, integrity, reputation and pride, but you’ll be darn sure you get that in writing – and with a deposit.
  13.  You cheer on co-opetition. You recognize that, when we embrace our competitors as members of the same community, we can achieve better discussions and generate solutions that draw from the richness of collaboration. You may even find a mentor or an opportunity to mentor.
  14.  Your value as a consultant does not depend on the length of your client list, the size of your bank account, the number of hours worked, the count of employees in your firm or whether you qualify as mega corporation or side job freelancer. It begins and ends with your own hold on the unique value within yourself.
  15. You have a special responsibility to safeguard and manage your business environment. You know the rule: do unto others as you would have them do unto you.
  16. You must take time to pursue personal development, self care and time with loved ones.
  17.  You know that rational planning requires you to think through your consulting fees, business costs, capacity, finances, savings and your emergency fund.
What would you add to the Expert Consultant’s Manifesto? What would you drop?  Your voice matters. Tell us.

 

Lew Sauder says:

This is an excellent list that I’m going to print and refer to on a regular basis. I would suggest that anyone in consulting, or considering it do the same. Although I think you cover it in a couple of these tips, I would include “Check your ego at the door”. Consultants often assume the “expert” label and forget that they are servants to the client. Confidence with humility is an excellent combination.
Lew Sauder, Author