Baffle ‘em with B.S.

by | Nov 12, 2012 | jahlberg

Technology consultants – I’m not a big fan. And I don’t think I’m alone. Sure, some large companies need consultants, but I believe that smaller firms should steer clear of them. Frankly the larger companies don’t really need them either, but that is another blog about how big bureaucratic organizations are often broken and need exhaustive coalition-building meetings and CYA documents to make decisions.

Let me be clear on my definition of “consultants”: people who provide expert advice professionally. They are in the advice business first, and the action business second. What does that mean? In my experience it means too much money gets spent on too many long meetings that result in too much time spent producing too many “thought pieces.” What’s missing? Getting the project done in a timely way. Instead execution happens after delivery of a dusty binder and an additional project bid.

At Waident we respect clients’ time, quickly making great decisions and then executing. And we do it on budget and on time. How do we make this magic happen? I think there are four underlying reasons for our success:  intimacy, trust, connection and orientation.

  • Intimacy – We get to know our clients, their goals and how they make decisions, which means we don’t need exhaustive meetings to get background for every project. We see the kinds of technical issues the organization faces every day because the problems cross our helpdesk, and are logged and reported.
  • Trust – Because we have longstanding relationships with our clients, they trust us to make sound decisions based on our experience across many companies. We don’t need to produce 30-page documents to justify our existence or our recommendations.
  • Connection – We work to get the right people in the room the first time and keep the discussion crisp. We only have follow-up meetings if absolutely needed. We provide timely, concise communication after meetings and to track project progress.
  • Orientation – We are not consultants; we are a consultative technology management company. It may sound like I’m splitting hairs, but it’s an important distinction. Our product is not advice, it is active management of a client’s technology, delivered in a consultative way.

So are there any good consultants out there? A few. My favorite consultants are more consultative and action oriented, and less prone to wordy treatises on this, that and the other thing. They focus less on reams of B.S. advice and more on driving positive action for their clients.

If you are “stuck” with a consultant, make sure you have someone in the room who has a good B.S.-o-meter, and can help re-focus on action versus discussion, timeliness versus exhaustiveness.





John Ahlberg
CEO, Waident

CIO in the corporate world and now for Waident clients. John injects order and technology into business process to keep employees productive, enterprises running, and data safe.


Related posts

Why Backups And MFA Are So Important For Ransomware

Why Backups And MFA Are So Important For Ransomware

Two of the simplest and cheapest ways to protect your company from a ransomware attack are Multifactor Authentication and a fresh backup. Here's why.   Back up everything! You are not invulnerable. Catastrophicdata loss can happen to you - one worm or Trojanis...

3 Security Vulnerabilities You Don’t Realize You Have

3 Security Vulnerabilities You Don’t Realize You Have

These days security is not something you "should be doing someday". Security is something that is critical to your company and needs to be managed every day and updated regularly. If you need a place to start (it is never too late) you can focus on the Top 5 Security...

Documentation – Your IT “Canary in a Coal Mine”

Documentation – Your IT “Canary in a Coal Mine”

I consistently hear the same technology concerns from business owners and executives: they don’t know what they don’t know. Do they have the right IT team in place (internal or outsourced)? Do they have the optimal technology solutions for their business? How, they...

Subscribe to our blog!

Get our latest thinking to keep your people productive, your enterprise running, and your data safe.

Share This