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Flawless Consulting: A Guide to Getting Your Expertise Used 3rd Edition

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Flawless Consulting: A Guide to Getting Your Expertise Used 3rd Edition

Author: Peter Block
Edition: 3rd Edition
Year: 2011
Language: English
ISBN 13: 978-0470620748
Publisher: Pfeiffer
ISBN 10: 470620749
Pages: 352
File: PDF
Price: 5.99$
Digital delivery: Via Email check your SPAM

Flawless Consulting: A Guide to Getting Your Expertise Used 3rd Edition

This Third Edition to Peter Block’s Flawless Consulting addresses business changes and new challenges since the second edition was written ten years ago. It tackles the challenges next-generation consultants face, including more guidance on how to ask better questions, dealing with difficult clients, work in an increasingly virtual world, how to cope with complexities in international consulting, case studies, and guidelines on implementation. Also included are illustrative examples and exercises to help you cement the guides offered.

Praise for the third edition of FLAWLESS CONSULTING

“Consulting at its best is about action and interaction, relationships and results. In a highly readable guide that is both inspirational and practical, Peter Block leads consultant and client together through a proven approach to realize their future.”
–SAMUEL R. STRICKLAND chief financial and administrative officer, Booz Allen Hamilton

“Surpasses the high standards of relevance, clarity, and wisdom characteristic of previous versions… Whether one’s consulting experience spans five years or fifty, there is a great deal in this new edition to prompt us to reflect on our own practice and to discuss with colleagues.”
–ROGER HARRISON independent consultant and author of Consultant’s Journey: A Dance of Word and Spirit and The Collected Papers of Roger Harrison

“Peter Block has written a masterful third edition of his masterpiece, Flawless Consulting. Important additions to the third edition are the strength-based strategies that many are beginning to use… in solving seemingly intractable problems in health care and other industries. They are featured in a new Chapter Twelve and form a common thread that runs through this entire path-breaking book.”
–JON C. LLOYD, MD, FACS senior associate, Positive Deviance Initiative; clinical advisor, Plexus Institute

“Peter’s masterwork, Flawless Consulting, has been my go-to guide since the first edition… Flawless Consulting is not just a practical, useful, and inviting book for practitioners. It’s all those things, but it’s also a book about some of the most vexing issues we face when consulting with organizations–issues of resistance, truth, doubt, vulnerability, and accountability. If you find yourself giving advice to people making choices, then this book is a must-have for you. Buy it today, use it tomorrow.”
–JIM KOUZES award-winning coauthor of the best-selling The Leadership Challenge and The Truth About Leadership, and Dean’s Executive Professor of Leadership, Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University

Praise for the third edition of FLAWLESS CONSULTING

“Consulting at its best is about action and interaction, relationships and results. In a highly readable guide that is both inspirational and practical, Peter Block leads consultant and client together through a proven approach to realize their future.”
―SAMUEL R. STRICKLAND chief financial and administrative officer, Booz Allen Hamilton

“Surpasses the high standards of relevance, clarity, and wisdom characteristic of previous versions… Whether one’s consulting experience spans five years or fifty, there is a great deal in this new edition to prompt us to reflect on our own practice and to discuss with colleagues.”
―ROGER HARRISON independent consultant and author of Consultant’s Journey: A Dance of Word and Spirit and The Collected Papers of Roger Harrison

“Peter Block has written a masterful third edition of his masterpiece, Flawless Consulting. Important additions to the third edition are the strength-based strategies that many are beginning to use… in solving seemingly intractable problems in health care and other industries. They are featured in a new Chapter Twelve and form a common thread that runs through this entire path-breaking book.”
―JON C. LLOYD, MD, FACS senior associate, Positive Deviance Initiative; clinical advisor, Plexus Institute

“Peter’s masterwork, Flawless Consulting, has been my go-to guide since the first edition… Flawless Consulting is not just a practical, useful, and inviting book for practitioners. It’s all those things, but it’s also a book about some of the most vexing issues we face when consulting with organizations―issues of resistance, truth, doubt, vulnerability, and accountability. If you find yourself giving advice to people making choices, then this book is a must-have for you. Buy it today, use it tomorrow.”
―JIM KOUZES award-winning coauthor of the best-selling The Leadership Challenge and The Truth About Leadership, and Dean’s Executive Professor of Leadership, Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University

About the author:

Peter Block is a citizen of Cincinnati, Ohio. He is a partner in Designed Learning, a training company that offers workshops designed by Block to build the skills outlined in his books. He is the author of Flawless Consulting, Stewardship, The Empowered Manager, and The Answer to How Is Yes. He is the recipient of the American Society for Training and Development Award for Distinguished Contribution to Workplace Learning and Performance and the Association for Quality and Participation President’s Award. He is also a member of Training magazine’s HRD Hall of Fame.

Reviews about the ebook:

  • Rob Kirk:
    The man speaks the truth. As a professional consultant, I was intrigued to see how much of my reality matched up with Peter Block’s and it is spot on. I really enjoyed his candor and truth in the struggles and opportunities to help clients make a big difference in their lives. It’s a humble profession and Block’s advice and system can help eliminate many of the pitfalls in not having a repeatable process. I highly recommend this treasure of a book.
  • Don Massenzio:
    A number of years ago, I found myself without a job for the first time in my adult life. At 40, this was scary until I woke up one morning, created a subchapter-S corporation, and became a consultant. This book, along with others by Peter Block, was a significant help in getting started and having the confidence to persevere for two years independently. Now I’m a consultant in a big four firm and the things I learned from this book still ring true.
  • Bas Vodde:
    Flawless Consulting is a classic in books on consulting, yet I was slightly disappointed. Don’t get me wrong, Flawless Consulting is a good and useful book that will definitively improve your consulting perspectives and skills, yet I had expected more. The parts of the book related to consultant authenticity were excellent, but the parts on consulting phases and contracting felt mechanic. Perhaps I’m just turned off by the phrases ‘phases’ (which often contradicts with a more continuous perspective) and ‘contracts’ (which often replace deep trust). The author did mention contract is more of a verbal/mental contract, but the word comes with a lot of baggage.The book is about 350 pages and contains 19 chapters plus some appendixes. It promises it is shorter than previous editions by moving more content online. The first few chapters set the tone for the rest of the book. The first chapter looks at the definition of consulting and introduces the 5 phase consulting process:
    1) Entry & Contracting,
    2) Discovery and Dialogue,
    3) Analysis and the Decision to Act,
    4) Engagement and Implementation,
    5) Extension, Recycle, or Termination.
    The rest of the book follows these phases in chronological sequence. The second chapter introduces the collaborative approach to consulting that the book takes. As a consultant, you collaborate with a client on a 50/50 basis to together help the client improve. The third chapter introduces the concept of authenticity to consulting, staying true and congruent to your own feelings and intuition, and trying to truly collaborate on an equal basis to resolve problems. These three concepts:
    1) consulting phases,
    2) collaborative relation,
    3) authenticity forms the basis for the rest of the book.

    I won’t summarize the rest of the chapters as they follow the consulting concepts in the order of the phases. The phases made me uncomfortable though as I’ve always viewed consulting as a more iterative and continuous activity where there is gradual discovery, decision making, and implementation going on all the time. The strict approach that the book took to these phases felt very unnatural to me, but it might have to do with the different types of consulting. Some might be purely project/goal basis and some might be more continuous. The collaborative and authenticity concepts would fit extremely well with a continuous and iterative view on consulting though, so in that sense, I felt that was a missed opportunity.

    All that said, the book is full of useful advice on how to improve your consulting skills. It is definitively useful for any person in a consultative role and would recommend picking this up. Good.

  • Lars Plougmann:
    This is an amazingly comprehensive “manual” to consulting. It covers techniques in detail while also discussing mindset and sharing recommendations.The author’s focus is on the process of consulting. The title is derived from this process view: If you followed the process, then you consulted flawlessly, regardless of the outcome. Therein lies a seed of humility: As consultants, we learn, advise, recommend, and encourage action – we do not have the power to guarantee outcomes.

    For all the wisdom in the book, reading it is a bit of a hard slog. I wish the content was available on a platform like Udemy, Lynda or Coursera instead, preferably with exercises included.

  • Parker Fay:
    A recent workplace development course entitled ” Effective Workplace Consulting” led me to this book. The return on investment was invaluable within the first chapter. Block confirmed that I was performing out of role and taught me to consult with peers and not take on their work. Within the first chapter, I have redefined workplace project roles and tasks, moved to 1:1 meetings with project team members and everyone thanked me as I gingerly gave them their work back. Block prepared me for any resistance which led to better meeting preparation…within the first chapter. I am now acting as a consultant as opposed to a “manager”. My supervisor noticed the change and tendered a compliment on my meeting management within a week of my beginning this book. This book made the difference!
    .I should have read this book two years ago for my current role and 15 years ago as I started in my career. You cannot afford to not read this book. Personally and professionally Block will show you that you may be acting out of role, futilely exerting energy, and setting yourself up for failure. I am now a Peter Block fan.
    How well do you manage resistance when pursuing your own needs when consulting — ask Peter Block
    How well do you garner commitment from others – ask Peter Block
    What should you define in your contract – ask Peter Block
    How do you determine if you are “effective” – ask Peter Block
    What is the discovery model for problem-solving that you can use time after time – ask Peter Block
  • Scott Wozniak:
    I wish I could give this book five stars–it has that much good content. But it’s so formal in a style that it reads like a textbook. It’s a really, really good textbook, though. If you’re someone who helps other people solve problems, whether a traditional consultant or a coach, a teacher, or even a leader, then this book has rich insights for you. Be patient and read slowly. Each paragraph has as much content as some chapters do in other books. It will be worth it.
  • Trung Nguyen:
    Having read over a hundred books in the fields of organization development, change management, and consulting this book has had a tremendous influence on my practice. It is probably one of my top 10 of all time.
    Block does not talk about the technical aspects of consulting but focuses on the way of being with the client and ourselves. This is as it should be. After all, we got selected for the job for possessing technical skills. That being said, Block advocates a partnership with the client for the joint discovery of the “real problem” and the “solution”. This is in contrast to the traditional expert and the pair of hands models of consulting.
  • Jay:
    It is a textbook. However, a great book to read for understanding the people within organizations. Recognizing the barriers to success includes allowing the tension to build within a conversation to the point of uncomfortable. Then guiding people through the tension with recognition of each silos perspective towards a new balancing point in the dichotomy of leadership and power within an organization is productive.Or the alternative is watching a few sharks fight it out while tearing the place, the people, and the clients to shreds with immature playground bullying tactics while a bunch of people duck for cover.
  • Stephanie:
    This book provides really interesting content for external consultants, starting from entering the organization and contracting to go through the entire process, however after reading it only once, the whole book fell apart. All the papers are separated, it is very difficult to put them together. The book became totally useless.
  • Petras Lenkutis:
    Great book for looking at the authentic side of consulting. It contains philosophy with grounding why the suggested way of consulting should work based on author experience. Also, it contains a process in which to conduct consulting that would be both professional and authentic. As my lecturer in a university commented – “a consulting in a humane way”. Currently, I use this book as a guide to establishing my own consulting practice and it sure helps for important things not to slip through my fingers in times of rush or stress.
  • Shrivika Dhawan:
    I devoured this book when I decided to turn my side-gig consulting into my main gig. It erases nuance, systemizes intangibles, and gives direction for every stage and intersection. Appreciate this author, appreciate this book. My copy is marked up, bent up, beat up, and treasured.
  • Shyamashree Rudra:
    I have to admit that I really liked Peter Block’s “Flawless Consulting”. This book was originally written in 1978 and then revised in 1998. I expected the book to be dated and irrelevant, but it wasn’t. The concepts that Block wrote about many years ago are still very much applicable today.
    Having been a consultant for 6 years, I especially liked this book because it focuses on the style of consulting I like (or rather liked!) to do — improving the capability of the client to find and implement his/her own solutions. I was especially impressed by the emphasis Block places on how to establish a 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 book is also well balanced between the needs of those who are internal consultants as well as external consultants/experts.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 had consulting experience, there is still a lot to learn. The questions and checklists Block provides throughout the book are practically a book by themselves. They are very well designed and address the most important issues. What I especially found useful was the extensive list of ways to diagnose what may be going wrong when the client asks questions or is inactive. I found even more useful the many ingenious responses to those situations that had never occurred to me. I have stumbled into a few successes in my consulting career and can look back and see it is because I applied the concepts of this book – whether by design or accident. Conversely, I can also see some other situations where the application of these concepts would have been very useful.

    Block strikes a perfect balance between theory and execution. In fact, there is a lot of both. He backs up his theories with flowcharts, checklists, and even cartoons.

    This book is the real deal. Block clearly knows what he is talking about when it comes to organizations and the consulting process. There is no doubt you will be a much-improved consultant or manager if you learn and apply the methods in the book. Truly a classic, and a “must-have” for anyone who consults, or who hires consultants.

  • Cherilyn Formanek:
    This came to my notice as a consulting class e-book; I purchased a hardcopy after reading the first chapter. I highly recommend it to ANYONE especially if you are looking to learn how to communicate better in ANY situation; but especially when you are communicating from a lesser status position (such as at work; with superiors or customers). As for consulting itself; this is by far the best advice you could ever get; not just for yourself but for anyone you may consult for and their organization.
  • Pamela Tucker:
    So far so good, and I think this book is written for professionals who already have competencies for working with people in consulting. I also think if you want to read this book keep in mind this book has a companion book too! The Flawless Consulting Fieldbook & Companion A Guide To Understanding Your Expertise. Peter Block, who has focused attention on consulting skills, empowerment processes, and reclaiming our individuality.These books will guide a professional to know all the stages and adhere strictly to them to be successful as a consultant. You will be able to assess your own abilities to these competencies even as a beginner. It does take time to become an expert in the field, but it will be worth knowing that you can help others help themselves.

    I just finished this book and found that it is a very good approach for consulting, but I also found a better author for consulting Schein. I will give a review but compared to both it is the approach that counts when dealing with clients.

    The six steps in Blocks book are closely related to Schein’s, after all, there are basics to consulting or even coaching.

    The consultant’s goals are:

    Goal one:
    Establish A collaborative relationship/ Contract /or not to take the work if one does not have the competencies. Block calls Entry and Contracting

    Goal two:
    Solving Problems so they stayed solved; Block calls Discovery and Dialogue

    Goal three:
    Two elements; technical/business in how people react around the problem; Block calls Analysis and the Decision to Act

    Goal four:
    Staging the client’s involvement, step by step; Block calls Engagement and Implementation

    Goal five:
    Completing (feedback) the requirements of each stage; continue with process plan; Block calls this last step Extension, Recycle, or Termination.

    If a consultant fails at one of these steps (Schein agrees) then the client will lose confidence and trust. Also, failure brings not being authentic it is a lot better to turn down the work if there are no competencies. If one does continue on then the chances are you will either be asked to leave, never will have the chance for future projects (this is the heart of consulting to return to the same clients) this build rapport and leads to other work.

  • Culture Enthusiast:
    I have had this book for over 10 years and it is a classic. Very sound advice. Peter Block has clearly been around the block (no pun intended) and has plenty of experience in the consulting world. The examples that he provides are realistic and the solutions that he suggests clearly viable. I also like the tone of the author, supportive and not patronizing style.
    Whether you are a newbie to the consulting world or an experienced consultant this book is a reliable resource that should be in your personal library. I have now purchased the new and revised 3rd edition that covers important elements such as working in a virtual world, operating in a volatile environment, and the importance of feedback and feedback meetings. Excellent book.
    I also suggest purchasing Baker’s “Implementing Value Pricing” for the pricing side of the business. A very useful and ideal companion to Block’s book.
  • Mark Smith:
    This book I found a little dry. It was hard for me to stick with it. But like every book there was value. Insights I had not thought of and reflection on my one experience and ways to do things differently.
  • Tony Llewellyn:
    This is the first book that I have read which focuses on the importance of putting the time and thought into setting up an engagement so that it has a better chance of being a successful experience for everyone involved. It is very practical giving a series of steps for each stage. A great investment of time.
  • Ning-Jia Ong:
    I resonated very well with a lot of what Peter Block talks about. In the first few pages, I have already begun to enjoy how he addresses the problem of clients asking for surrogates – us consultants doing the job of the client instead of doing what we’re supposed to do – consulting.His points on making sure we consultants are aware of our own needs as well as our clients were also very valid. Very often we consultants neglect our own needs for more information, for more commitment, for more control, and just do what we can to “manage” the project outcomes.

    He later goes on to talk a lot about being authentic. Something I again found very interesting because I have seldom managed to observe this while working in this industry. More often than now, everyone has their own agendas, holding information from each other and trying to navigate the project away from appearing negative. There’s a lot of taboo topics that are avoided in conversations and few are authentic about what they are trying to achieve out of the project. Those who are authentic, get shot down for speaking the truth or “opening a can of worms”.

    The whole book has been very practical and gives step-by-step guidance on what to think about during each step of the consulting phases. I can’t wait to start on his consulting field book.

  • Benita Treanor:
    Excellent, insightful a must for people who are involved in enabling others.
  • Kyle Farris:
    This book was remarkably timely for me, and I believe it is an essential read for anyone who consults or otherwise offers counsel/advice. Peter Block put into words some hard lessons I’ve learned over the years: “A major objective of every consultation is to encourage you to focus on and value the affective, or interpersonal, aspect of the relationship you have with the client” (p. 14). For some, this may come naturally (and likely to a fault). Some professionals are so focused on the interpersonal end of work that they neglect true problems and fall short of providing effective, lasting solutions. I fall on the other end of the spectrum – I am often so focused on the true problems and long-term solutions that I neglect the interpersonal side of things. Flawless Consulting offers a fantastic insight into how to prioritize the people and politics when offering the very best to the client. I will likely read this again, which is highly uncommon for me.5-Star: Everyone should read this.
    4-Star: Everyone in this specific field should read this.
    3-Star: This was a decent read for the specific field, but there are better options.
    2-Star: It got me to the end of the book, so there is that.
    1-Star: It was bad enough that I didn’t finish it.
  • Simon Lee:
    Block gives a comprehensive and fundamental lesson of delivering good consulting. Rather than just being rational as many did, relationship building and Interpersonal skill is always the key to push through. The right thing to do is to be humble, open, and radically transparent throughout the process.I do recommend this book as it is very down-to-earth and easy to read. It covers steps and phrases of consulting from contracting, discovery, making decisions to implementation. For me, contracting is the most crucial phrase to negotiate wants between both client and consultant, understand the root cause and motivation from the very beginning. Consulting is a mandatory skill that everyone should learn, as we all work and interact with people no matter in which role, position, or level. This is just the beginning and the only experience that can truly help us to become successful consultants.
  • Kian Ting:
    Learned a lot from the book and how I can do better in work. One takeaway is creating credibility before starting the consulting work is good as it allows clients to trust us. The other one is a consultant as the teacher and facilitator, instead of being the expert and know it, that is also a good way to allow solutions to emerge. And the solutions that emerge with this method are more inclusive in all the aspects of the problems it is trying to solve as opposed to coming up with a solution by collecting information/requirements etc.

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Author:

Peter Block

Edition:

3rd

Year:

2011

Language:

English

ISBN 13:

978-0470620748

Publisher:

Pfeiffer

ISBN 10:

0470620749

Pages:

352

File:

PDF

Digital delivery:

Via Email

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