Friday, July 14, 2006

What The Hell Is A Consultant?

Over the years I've met a lot of people who stated their profession as "consultant." I'm still not sure what one of those does.

I've gotten some general descriptions from the consultants themselves, but nothing I could grasp for the long term. These people are as mysterious and as common as Scientologists.

I'm certain there's a secret consultant organization operating somewhere behind the scenes, toiling away at their sinister agenda. Whatever the hell it might be.

As I am currently being paid by a company to do work on a limited-time, contract basis, some might refer to me as a consultant. But, the people I work for rarely consult with me. They mainly assign me work and I complete it. (Maybe I should be called an "assigntant," or a "completionist?")

Perhaps a consultant is one of those people who provides "business solutions," but then what the hell are those? I wrote about them every day for years, and I still have no idea. There are too many solutions around, and not enough answers.

Ah, the professional world. Just throw some nebulous expressions around and you're golden.


Jack K. said...

I have some ideas.

Consultants may be considered "experts".

Experts are defined in this way:

An ex is a has been, and

a spert is a drip under pressure.

The other idea is that a consultant is an expert from out of town who carries a brief case.

In neither of these ideas is there even a smidgen of credibility based upon actual knowledge about any topic.

I hope this is helpful. I will not send you a consultant's fee bill.


fatty ~ said...

heh those who can't do, consult.

Jack K. said...

Watch it fatty. You've just gone from preachin' to meddlin'.

Someday you may want to try your hand at consulting.


K9 said...

/bark bark bark

ditto fatty.
consultants are big shots that wrecked companies and got fired or those with failed political campaigns.


Pete Bogs said...

a lot of information for me to consider here... I am inclined to think consultants are people who couldn't find a proper job...

Jack K. said...

No, bogs. They couldn't hold a proper job.

yuk, yuk, yuk.

The Flabbergasted Heathen said...

As someone who will soon be a consultant...we get paid to tell people what to do. Kinda like management, but with better clothes.

Bird said...

i believe since you wrote about consulting and don't know what it is, you are fully qualified to be one.

all kidding aside, a good consultant is someone with a great deal of business acumen and who knows how to quickly assess a business problem, create a solution and sell that solution not just to the bigwigs,but the little guys who will ultimately implement it (along with the consultant's team).

i know a few legit consultants - who are quite smart and ethical and actually do help businesses and do earn their 6-figure annual income.

they are not to be confused with bean counters and axe-grinders. nor educational consultants - who are the bane of the k-12 school system.

CROAK said...

"Consultants" are a bit like "Public Relations Officers". It took me years to work out that PR jobs include standing in supermarkets handing out bits of bread or such for people to "try before buying".
Sad isn't it?

Pete Bogs said...

bird - you used the "s" word: solutions... that's just vague enough to be useless... but then again, I am a crusty old corporate copywriter...

Bird said...

yes i did, didn't i! woohoo - now i can be a consultant and make big bucks - hurrah!

Frosty Snowbro said...

I talk to these type of guys all the time. They don't know what they are doing.

Pete Bogs said...

SnoBro - yo!