Posted by: LYF | September 27, 2011

Consulting so far

I’ve been going back and forth between well rested and manic for the past month now.  We’ve been working on this project at a break-neck pace.  I’m too manic to even organize my thoughts.  Here are some things I’ve learned so far.

Staying healthy is a real effort. 

I’ve had to interrupt conversations to tell people I need to eat something or that we need to leave the office to give ourselves enough time to sleep.  I wouldn’t be able to survive if I didn’t have my vitamin d, fish oil and travel sized foam roller.

Social skills are really important

Recognizing how someone is sitting in a chair at the beginning versus the end of the meeting to gauge how receptive they are to what you’re saying is really important.  Other things I catch myself thinking of – degree and amount of eye contact, fidgeting, tone of voice, and pace of speech.  Sometimes I even get worried that people are going to notice me thinking of this stuff when I should be focusing on the meeting instead.

Boldness is rewarded

If you have the choice between doing something bold and holding back, bold seems to be the best option.  It’s important to note that I’m not saying “stupid.”

Push-back is an art form

You end up being asked to do lots of things that are unreasonable given the amount of time you have or your current level of knowledge.  It’s really hard to say no to people, especially when you’re trying to impress everyone.  But taking on responsibilities that are over your head will usually lead to low quality work.  So sometimes you have to push back.  You have to give a plausible reason why you can’t do the thing you’re being asked of.  It also helps if you give an alternative solution too.

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Responses

  1. Push-back as an art form – well said!

  2. Now that you’ve got yourself in business consulting, how does it compare to the around-the-clock result-driven experience told by a business consultant at DT you shared here on Oct 21, 2009?

    • Its exactly how I described it to varying levels of intensity.

      • Funny – I had that moment today – just working near the city, where I had to declare, yup, time to get Burritos, we’re not working through lunch!


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