Consulting Best Practices

I just finished up an excellent few days in Hilton Head, SC at a best practices summit organized by consulting guru Alan Weiss. About 70 top consultants talked about industry challenges, case studies, and ways to improve our performance–because, as I advise my clients, it’s essential to make sure you’re staying ahead of the curve.

My best take-aways?

  • The most value comes from “perpetual motion machines” of innovation. How can you leverage the power of a community to enhance overall value (as with Apple and the apps store)?
  • You can tell within one meeting if you and a client will be a good fit. Ask the right questions and save everyone agony down the road.
  • The lowest-hanging fruit (for potential clients/buyers) are people whom you already know, and who already know you.
  • Because of changing market conditions, within five years, you can’t afford not to be selling both to corporations and to individuals.
  • Don’t save too much information, or you’ll get paralyzed by it. Save only what’s essential–and make that easy to find and access.

What are your best practices for 2010 and beyond?

Dorie Clark is a marketing strategy consultant who has worked with clients including Google, Yale University, and the National Park Service. Listen to her podcasts or follow her on Twitter.