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IT Consultants Need To Be Multilingual→

IT Consultants Need To Be Multilingual

Alan Weiss, on IT consultants, for ContrarianConsulting.com writes:

Just this morning, an IT consultant complained that I was unfair castigating IT people for not being customer-oriented, and he prided himself on being a “level three” service provider, or some such thing. Right in his letter of complaint, he was being obscure. He was speaking his language, not mine, but expecting me to adapt to him. Is level three good or bad? Who cares?

Consultants need to speak their clients’ languages. Bankers talk about defalcations. Insurance people will cite “churn.” Hospital management is concerned with capitation.

You get the idea. Do a little homework so that you’re talking in terms the client or prospect is accustomed to using. Don’t talk about “OD interventions,” “Maslow’s hierarchy of needs,” or “hygiene factors.”

Most sales are preceded by the ability to communicate effectively. Most referral business comes from delighted clients who have been heard. So please stop telling me to reboot.

Why Marketing REALLY Matters

A business does marketing and sales for the money, but that’s not the sole reason to get good at it.  One of my favorite mentors, authors, and consultants is David Maister.  One day a while back I was reading through his archives and snipped this nugget from an article entitled “Doing It For The Money” (if you’ve been on my e-mail list for awhile you may have seen me mention this quote once before):

What getting good at marketing can do for the individual is to help him or her find the clients they could care about and be eager to help, and the types of work that would be truly stimulating.  The better you are at marketing, the more truly professional you can be, because you are not forced to take money from anyone and everyone just because you need the cash.

David’s original article is a bit long, but there are some other tidbits wrapped around this quote if you feel inclined to dig them up.  The link to the article is above.  I recommend reading two of his books, “The Trusted Advisor” and “Strategy and the Fat Smoker“, or spending a morning with your coffee in hand while perusing his articles and blog archive.

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How to Find, Reconnect With, and Revive Your Professional Network

In early 2007, several months after moving on from my last venture, I found myself sitting on my butt a lot doing, well, not much of anything (I did get a lot of reading in).  I wasn’t getting out all that much to interact with other people and wanted to re-connect with folks. I did not have any system for tracking my various contacts.  I had no centralized addressbook.  And what information I did have seemed to be incomplete and usually out of date. Continue reading How to Find, Reconnect With, and Revive Your Professional Network