How Can You Be a Successful Consultant?

February 6, 2015 | By Raja Gudepu

How Can You Be a Successful Consultant? - Oteemo

Consulting is an art and a science. I am very passionate about consulting and providing the best solutions for my customers. After working for consulting firms and consulting organizations for many years, I started Oteemo. My goal is to build great technology products and provide outstanding consulting advice to organizations. I am always on the look out for great talent to join Oteemo to help build great products and solutions for our customers.

Following are few qualities that define a good consultant and these are the qualities I look for when hiring for my team:

Customer focused: Laser focus on customer’s requirements, pain points and their goals and objectives. I would learn any technology,  read up on any business and do whatever is needed to make sure that my customer’s get the right solution and are successful.

Business Savvy: IT organizations exist to enable the businesses and for an IT consultant to see things from a business lens is extremely important. It will help us ask the right questions (not just from a technical context but also from a business context as well). Understanding business drivers and market drivers is important before proposing technology choices and recommendations.

Great Communication: I cannot emphasize this enough. Consultants should be adept at clearly communicating (written and verbal skills) and asking questions, articulating recommendations, expressing opinions and making their voices heard. There is no such thing as over communication. Through effective communication, good consultants don’t surprise their customers. Good or bad, there should be no surprises.

Expectations Management: This is what it boils down to. I’ve seen projects that were complete on time and under budget but were still deemed unsuccessful. Reason being, they didn’t meet the expectations of the stakeholders. Good consultants figure out a way to manage expectations of all stakeholders throughout the life cycle of the project

Adaptive: Consultants will have to work with different types people on a variety of cases/projects with different customers in a short period of time. Early on in my career, I’ve learned more in an year of consulting than I’ve learned in 3 years working for the same employer on the same project. The pace of change kept me on my toes and I had to be attentive and adaptive. Adapting to quickly changing customers is another critical consulting skill.

Quick Learner: Because things change so quickly in consulting, consultants need to be quick learners. You need to be a self starter, figure out where to look for the right information and digest that information quickly. It’s not just about learning new technology but it’s about becoming an expert at using that technology the right way for customers.



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