Consultants can increase their value by identifying and focusing on natural strengths and limiting their specialized area of expertise.
Betsy Jordyn is the founder of Accelera Consulting Group. She is an organizational development and strategy consultant who previously worked with Walt Disney World. Her clients also include JCPenney, United Airlines, Hilton Vacations, and many others. In this episode, Betsy shares the benefits of identifying and narrowing in on a specialized area of expertise, her advice on how to efficiently take control of client requests in order to deliver a more valuable assessment, and how to determine if organizational development consulting is the right fit for you.
Regardless of size, all companies all have the same basic issues.
Even Walt Disney World needs consultants to take their concepts for future improvements to the next level. Your job as a consultant is to identify what challenges the company has and present solutions for how to overcome them. I asked Betsy to really pinpoint what a consultant bring to the table that high profile companies don’t have internally, and her answer is an encouraging one. Be sure to listen for her perspective on the true value of a consultant.
Not the best in the business? You can still succeed simply by pitching the right work.
Every consultant is endowed with strengths and weaknesses, but your weaknesses don’t have to limit your success. Listen to Betsy’s story about how her masters program gave her the start in Organizational Development that eventually led her to starting her own business.
Are there benefits to narrowing in on an area of specialization?
As a consultant, you need to overcome the ‘scarcity fear’ by identifying the type of work that you most like to do and that you’re best at. That is the work that you should build you business around. Betsy insists that you should never hesitate to turn down work that isn’t the right fit, or to ask for more money for work in your areas of greatest strength. She shares examples of specialized work that have created the most value for her, as well as her number one tip for identifying your greatest strengths.
How can you take control of client requests and increase project value?
Clients often approach consultants with what they believe is the solution to their problems, but in Betsy’s experience, businesses are never right about their suggested solutions. We discuss how NOT saying yes to the initial assignment allows you to take control of the conversation. Before committing to any work, consultants need to ensure that their expertise is relevant, timely, and has fit with each particular client system before determining the best way to move forward. Once these conditions are set, you can guarantee your results. You won’t want to miss Betsy’s tried-and-true method for identifying yourself as a strategic business partner.
Are you wired to become an Organizational Development consultant?
If you’re considering specializing in OD consulting, there are several key considerations. First, determine if you are wired to think like an OD consultant. Betsy has several assessments that can help with this step. And while OD consultants love theoretical processes, it is essential to learn how to deliver them as practical techniques to clients. This requires the knowledge of a seasoned mentor. To find out more about how to successfully specialize in OD consulting, you need to listen to this episode of Consulting Success with Betsy Jordyn.
[1:05] Betsy shares the kinds of challenges that come with increasing leadership and organizational capacities.
[2:35] Even Walt Disney World needs consultants to take their concepts for improvement in the future to the next level.
[4:45] Betsy’s Masters program gave her the start in OD that eventually led to her starting her own business.
[7:20] The transition from consulting within an organization to working on her own was easier for Betsy because of her toolbox and her mentors.
[8:35] Consultants need to narrow in on an area of expertise in order to keep their business growing.
[11:00] Don’t ever hesitate to turn down work that isn’t the right fit, or to ask for more money for work in your areas of greatest strength.
[14:05] Compliments are the key to identifying first tier gifts and strengths.
[15:15] Specializing allows clients to easily see how you will fit into their team.
[17:10] Betsy’s key tip for extracting more value from their client projects is to NOT say yes to the initial assignment that they ask of you — take control of the conversation so that you can help identify and fill their business performance gaps.
[21:35] Consultants need to ensure that their expertise is relevant, timely, and has fit with each particular client system, before determining the best way to move forward.
[25:10] You can add more value than 99% of consultants by first helping the client articulate their business performance gaps through your initial assessment.
[28:50] Consultants that are interested in organizational development need to make sure that they are wired to think like an OD consultant, and get a mentor who can help with delivering practical techniques to their clients.
Mentioned in This Episode:
“I like to take an existing fire and make it burn even brighter and stronger.” — Betsy Jordyn
“When you specialize, people can quickly see you as a part of the team.” — Betsy Jordyn
“It’s absolutely essential to figure out what we’re best at.” — Betsy Jordyn
“A consultant is not a pair of hands, and not a surrogate leader. You are there to increase leadership and organization capacity.” — Betsy Jordyn