The size and complexity of IT projects require consultants with in-depth specialist know-how! Youhave those in-house specialists to help your customers. They are technically and analytically skilled professionals and deliver excellent work
But ... there are some classic frustrations with IT projects
Despite their expertise and their devotion to business success, you notice that some typical frustrations in IT projects arise. And these frustrations do not usually stem from the lack of know-how of the consultants, but rather to their consultancy skills, which are just not at the same senior level as their technical skills.
Develop your role as a trusted advisor and senior sparring partner
With a Training Consultancy Skills your consultancy skills will reach the same high level as your expertise. You will be able to respond to the costumers' needs, both in business and personally. This strengthens your position in becoming a sparring partner of the customer rather than a supplier of services. It improves the quality of your work and the customer satisfaction, it increases your business opportunities and gives your consultants more job satisfaction.
If the system works according to the specifications upon project completion, you might say that the project has been completed successfully. However, the quality as perceived by the customer depends on many more factors, such as: did the consultant understand the challenges the company faces, was the working relationship pleasant, did the project bring ‘added value’ to the client’s business, over and above the technical delivery?
Develop relationships, including the senior level
Contact with the stakeholders at senior level is often limited to the beginning and the end of a project. It is possible to significantly improve the success of a project by having regular contact with the client and other stakeholders. It prevents misunderstandings and can result in valuable midway adjustments.
Grow into the role of 'trusted advisor'
"Your wish is our command" might seem OK to complete the project according to your clients specifications. But by putting yourself in the shoes of your costumer and by asking challenging questions, it is possible to significantly increase the value of your input to the company. Through that you position yourself as a ‘trusted advisor. Just exactly what is needed to provide new business opportunities.
Cross selling and upselling
IT professionals are closely involved in the customers’ core process, which enables them to understand what the customer needs or how the customer could most profit from the systems available. And when consultants explore with their customers the most valuable solutions to meet their needs, cross-selling and upselling can evolve naturally from this collaboration.
Getting more satisfaction from working as a consultant
Developing consultancy skills can help preventing frustration in the consultants' work and can provide greater job satisfaction. It is also a means to prevent consultants from getting ‘overworked’ and it can eventually lead to greater loyalty to you as an employer.
Combine analytic expertise with attention to the costumer
Build an optimal relationship with customers, both in business terms and personally:
Rapidly assesing the personal needs of the customer.
Integrating insights in your own behavior with business communication skills.
Translating your own unique added value to meet the business needs of your clients.
Take the customer along in a collaborative thinking process
Speak the customers' language'
Influence their decisions positively:
Ask questions strategically.
Cope effectively with resistance, strong feelings, conflicts and business politics.
Allow for, and accommodate within your consulting process, your customers' hesitations, Impatience, or any other ‘tests’ that the customer may put your way.
Your own presentation style
Listening, pitching and presenting
Develop your impact:
Positively influence the first impression you make - via body language and use of voice; - and by putting forward your own strengths.
Connect your expertise to the costumers’ needs.
Give (and gain) recognition
Analysis as strength
Use your analytical skills to enhance your business communication:
Recognising and acknowledging its strength.
Gain insight in your own limiting patterns and influence them positively.
Respond adequately and supportively after a quick analysis of the customers’ behavior.
Give recognition by appreciating the customers’ intentions.
How would you respond to this customer?
As an IT consultant you meet different customers. And just as you want to speed up your new service, your customer starts to doubt its reliability. How would you react if your customer, just like Peter-Paul Beijers in the role of customer here, ponders and weighs, and just keeps on doubting your service?
A Sometimes it's easy to talk about all kinds of different topics and you automatically know how you want to respond. But if your immediate response doesn't ‘click’ with your customer 100%, what do you do? For example - how would you react if your customer, just like Mathijs Kreugel in the client role here, protests against the hourly rate that you propose for a specialist? I would like to know how you manage this conversation!
Marieke de Boer's Senior Consultancy Skills training has given me several practical tools to better communicate with clients and colleagues. What I really like about Marieke is that she seems to know what you're thinking. Because she knows how to give the right tip time and time again or to put her finger on the sore spot. By paying attention to relevant practical events during the training sessions, she ensures that the training courses were of immediate value to me in my work.
A good mix of theory and practice
Roelof Folkersma - March 2021
During this training I learned a lot about people's needs and motivations and how to deal with them in an effective way. In addition, it has helped me to become more aware of my way of communicating and the effects of my actions on others. It has helped me to zoom out more and made me even more aware of my surroundings. It is an intensive process with a good mix of theory and practice. There is a lot of opportunity to put theory into practice through role-playing with actors. Marieke knows how to create a safe environment so that the confrontational nature of these role plays has never stood in the way of the learning effect for me. It has brought me a lot and I still benefit daily from the things I learned in this training.
Marieke knows how to pull you out of your comfort zone in a pleasant, safe way
Wesley Mechelse - December 2020
I can recommend this training from Marieke to everyone! It was quite an intensive training but also very valuable. It is very nice and interesting to learn how to recognize the personal and business needs of your interlocutor and how to communicate with them in an effective way. And the best of all is that you can immediately apply this in practice parallel to the training and therefore immediately notice the added value. The relationship between theory and practice was perfect, where the theory is first briefly explained and you then immediately start practicing with it in the form of role plays with actors. What is a special quality of Marieke is that she knows how to pull you out of your comfort zone in a pleasant, safe way. This, in combination with the targeted feedback and coaching from Marieke, guarantees that you will learn and develop a lot. Personally, I have in any case come to new insights about myself and I have added a few concrete points for development.
This training has provided me with many new insights
Timo Landman - July 2017
A training in which you learn a lot in a short time about how you come across and how you can influence your behavior and the behavior of your conversation partner with small adjustments. This training has provided me with many new insights and that is partly because Marieke gives the training with passion. Recommended for anyone who wants to develop themselves further and learn more about themselves.
Ferdi Brand - September 2017
It was an intensive process in which I learned a lot about myself in dealing/interacting with my environment. By listening to the group, the coach ensures that breaks are inserted at the right time and that they are kept sharp with different forms of play. The personal attention and tailor-made teaching materials are exceptional! Highly recommended, especially the coaching conversation has brought me further.
Happy with the training and Marieke's qualities
Sander van der Wijngaart - July 2016
It was a super training. We were very pleased with the training and Marieke's quality. We have positive feedback to give only. During the training the added value showed immediately in learning how to give recognition to others and in understanding the personal and business needs of the customer. This greatly helps to increase the impact of our work. The exercises with the actor in the role of the customer, e.g. the funnel of the dialogue, is both instructive and and fun. The tools provided can be applied in our daily work instantly. The training is very useful as a consultant as well as for personal development and how to 'read' other people. Marieke has the talent to encourage people to get out of their comfort zone at their own pace and supports them to rise above themselves.
Appreciation for everyone's talents
Paul Baan - May 2016
As Incentro we have been working with Marieke for a number of years. She trains our Incentronauten (junior, medior and senior) in consultancy skills, specifically in the effect of body language and use of the voice. She appreciates individual talents and from there helps to build skills for each individual. Moreover, Marieke trained a number of Incentronauten to be an actor in role plays, so they can be an actor in future trainings. I was one of the lucky ones to do so and learned how I can accel the learning curve of the person you are working with. Fascinating.
A tailor-made program
Give yourself distinctive competitive edge by responding to the personal and business needs of the customer. Use a conversational structure that you can always fall back on.
A common program consists of three separate days.
Senior consultancy skills
Consultancy skills +
Recognize your limiting behaviour patterns and develop your emotional intelligence.
Deal more effectively with emotions, objections and conflicts.
Prepare strategically for a political case and present it in a ‘high-pressure’ environment.
A typical program consists of five separate days and an evening.