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Consultant-client relationship and the consequences of the role change during the consulting process

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  1. Theory
    1. Sub questions
    2. The consultant-client relationship
  2. Companies' / Interviewees' profiles
    1. Pool consultancy
    2. Halliburton
  3. Interviews' analysis
    1. Roles
    2. Problem owners
    3. Role change and consequences

The client-consultant relationship is usually treated as central to the nature of a management consultancy work. Though it is true that consultants need to have a clear conceptual picture of their definition of consultation, and they need to understand how the operational model they choose helps facilitate their effectiveness as consultants, experiencing and understanding the process steps of being a consultant is where it all comes together.

In this paper, the following questions will be examined:
?How does the consulting process operate?
?What are the different behavioral roles of a consultant?
?How do these roles change during the different consultant phases?
?What are the consequences for the consultant-client relationship when the consultant changes roles during the consultant phases?

We will now introduce the profiles of the companies, namely Pool Consultancy and Halliburton, where the interviews were conducted.

In the second part, the theory of the consultant-client relationship and the change of roles in the consulting process will be discussed. We have noticed some consequences when the consultant is a process helper or a content helper, although good content-focused consultants often possess excellent process skills and use them as a regular part of the consulting process.

Then, an analysis of the interviews in connection to the topic chosen will be done. Finally, the conclusion will be drawn.

[...] I prefer both so that they get the feeling that we take our clients personally and work individually with each of them. How often do you feel the proposal should be worked on? How often do you adjust your proposals? That happens every once in a while. Sometimes I adjust the proposal or even make a completely new one. Which steps do you follow if the client is reluctant to accept your first proposal? Everything happens for a reason. By preparing a proposal I delve deeper in my client's situation. [...]


[...] (1997) - The concept of client from a process consultation perspective: a guide for change agents, Journal of Organizational Change Management, Vol No - Steele, F. (1975) - Consulting for Organizational Change, University of Massachusetts Press, Amherst, MA. - Burnes, R.B., Cooper, C., West, P. (2003) - Organizational learning: the new management paradigm?, Management Decision, Vol No - Granovetter, M. (1985) - Economic Action and Social Structure: The Problem of Embeddedness, American Journal of Sociology, Vol.91, No.3, pp.481?510. - Dewayne et al. [...]


[...] We also try to personalize the covering letter of the proposal and for the larger projects we also provide executive summaries that show our position and commitment from a management level. Which steps do you follow if the client is reluctant to accept your first proposal? Always ask clarification to understand why our proposal is not favorable. Based on the outcome we try to explain our proposal and if needed and allowed we make an alternative proposal. If you realize that you made mistakes in the way you work, how do you correct these mistakes? [...]

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