am 16. Februar 2000
About a year ago, I decided to leave a full-time internal consulting position (health care) to start my own consulting firm. Several months after having done so, I've just discovered Peter Block's "Flawless Consulting." There is no doubt in my mind that had I read this (or the 1st edition) sooner, the years I spent as an internal consultant would have been much easier and much more fruitful. (Shame on me!)
Anyone in the consulting biz owes it to himself/herself to purchase and read this book. If you work in a business and don't consider yourself a consultant, get the book anyway - you might be surprised to learn just how much consulting you actually do. There are some VERY powerful lessons about negotiation between the covers. The checklists alone in this book are worth the price, but it is a fantastic piece of work.
am 2. Juli 2000
This is an excellent book that accomplishes two things the author promised to accomplish. First, Block effectively outlines a strategic approach to working with customers, generating contracts, building relationships, and respecting each other in the process (you and the consumer of your services). This is not one of those "there are two kinds of customers in this world" books offering trite and simplistic answers to a complex process. You really learn something, not just get exposed to cliches. Second, Block provides realistic and useful examples of situations which can challenge your plans, strategies, etc. They are helpful, nicely written, and practical. The cartoons (by Janis Nowlan?) are great too!
am 10. März 2000
I have learned from the first and second editions of this book and from Peter Block in person in such profound ways that I can't overstate it...he is my hero. Organization Development is richer because this man teaches and writes for all of us. Thank you, Peter...write some more! I learn from everything you tell me!
I liked this book very much, because it focuses on the style of consulting I like to do -- increasing the capacity of the client to find and implement her/his own solutions. What especially impressed me was the great care placed on how to establish the relationship with the client, as well as defining the assignment. Consultants love to define assignments, but often don't give much thought to the relationship. The emphasis should be just the opposite.
The book is nicely balanced between the needs of those who supply internal consulting (whether formally, or as staff resources) and external consultants and experts. I have played both roles, and each one teaches you something you need to know in order to be a better consultant. This is the only book on consulting that I have read that captures both perspectives and roles well.
A great strength of the book is that there are extensive examples of the same issue so that you can get a good perspective, even if you don't yet have much experience as a consultant. So it is a terrific book for those who are new to consulting.
For those of us who have a few decades of consulting experience, there is still a lot to learn. I was especially helped by the extensive list of ways to diagnose what may be going wrong when the client asks questions or is inactive. I was helped even more by many ingenious responses to those situations that had never occurred to me.
This is a principled book, one that considers the needs of the client and the consultant in a fair and even-handed way. It also gives you the perspective you need to apply those principles.
I heartily agree with the emphasis on getting as much relevant client involvement as possible, to improve commitment, understanding, relationships, and the ability to implement later on.
The next time I run into a potential snag in a consulting relationship, I intend to check my thinking with this wonderful guide. I suggest you do the same. You'll need to have a copy around, so plan to buy one on Amazon.com.
For those fans of The McKinsey Way, you should read this book, too. It will facilitate your career in much more valuable and signficant ways.
am 20. August 1999
Peter Block covers the intangibles of consulting: the politics, communications and the obstacles that derail the consultant/client relationship. This book is a MUST read, not only for consultants, but for anyone that works in or around companies that have politics, or bureaucracy, or people. That should cover just about all of us. This book helped me because it covered so much more then the business techniques of consulting, hey I'm a business consultant after all. Flawless Consulting helps you master communication and contracting gaffs, to understand why after much good advice the customer still does the wrong thing, and most importantly how your success can be assured despite those kind of issues.
am 8. September 1999
This book has been a useful guide for me over the past 15 years at various stages of my career as a Human Resource professional. Block provides a comprehensive framework and practical tips for the consultant (both external and internal) at various stages of the consultancy process. For the beginners in business consultancy and professionals in any staff functions, the book will set you on the right foot. One will also find it an important refresher and practical toolbox throughout their career. The book is delightful to read, with lots of interesting illustrations and examples. It is one of few books that I always keep within reach in my office.
am 29. Oktober 1998
I think everyone should read this book. Even if you don't think you're a consultant - you are one. You probably try to get your services used inside a company.
Block has a real insight into how the dynamics of consultancy work. I read it before I dealt with my first external client and it saved me from what would have otherwise been less than flawless consulting! As it was, it turned into a great success.
I'll be rereading it regularly.
am 15. Dezember 1997
I was given this book when I joined our firm. It is as relevent today as when it was written. I recently was involved with a project that went sour and, as a result, went back and read his chapter on when a project is about to fail. Every warning sign he listed was present in this project and we almost failed to see them!
This should be a must read for all consultants. I am buying several copies for members of my team!
am 6. August 1998
An essential book for the one-person consultant, either just beginning or a veteran. No matter how well you think you know your clients or your expertise, this book will keep you focused on the consulting essentials, leading to successful and implemented projects - and clients who will want you again. If you can only afford one book on consulting, this is the one - no bull!
am 10. April 2000
Read this book! It will vilify what you always thought a project should be. It will give you support on those days when nothing is going right. Some of the sample dialog could have come directly from client contact I had, myself! Very real, not alot of fluff, or theory . Some good templates. The only chapter missing was the one on politics. Best of all, its easy to read, it won't take more than a few hours on the plane between client sites.