Flawless Consulting : A Guide to Getting Your Expertise Used

Edition: 3rd
Format: Hardcover
Pub. Date: 2011-03-15
Publisher(s): Pfeiffer
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Customer Reviews

A worth own  March 15, 2011
Rating StarRating StarRating StarRating StarRating Star

A very cheap, clear, practical and no dull moment textbook. The author 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 lessons in the book. I highly recommend it for HR professionals who want to be successful and, almost as importantly, want to be happy in their work and its outcomes.

Flawless Consulting : A Guide to Getting Your Expertise Used: 4 out of 5 stars based on 1 user reviews.


When the landmark best-seller Flawless Consulting was first published more than three decades ago, it was quickly adopted as the "consultant's bible." With his legendary warmth and passion, Peter Block explained how to deal effectively with clients, peers, and others. The book continues to speak to people in a support function inside organizations as well as to external consultants.

This thoroughly revised and updated third edition of Peter Block's groundbreaking book explores the latest thinking on consultation. It includes new insights about how we can organize our consulting around discovering the strengths, positive examples, and gifts of the client organization or community. The book remains a practical and specific guide for anyone who needs to develop a capacity for deeper relatedness and partnership -- which means it is for all who wish to make a real difference in the world.

This new edition covers the consulting challenges that have arisen from the way we routinely communicate electronically and live in the virtual world. Block suggests ways to overcome the distancing and isolating effects inherent in electronic connects. The book also includes practical guidance on how to ask better questions, gives suggestions for dealing with difficult clients, and contains expanded guidelines on more engaging forms of implementation.

Flawless Consulting includes two new examples, taken from health care and educational reform efforts, to show how consulting skills can be useful (and often transformative) in a broader context. These illustrative examples point the way for achieving changes for leadership in business, government, religion, human services, and more.

Like the first two editions, Flawless Consulting affirms the notion that authentic behavior and personal relationships are the key to technical and business success. By demonstrating their ability to be truly authentic at each step in the process, consultants can aim toward creating workplaces that are more collaborative and ultimately more successful.

Author Biography

Peter Block is an author and consultant whose work is about empowerment, stewardship, chosen accountability, and the reconciliation of community. He is the author of several best-selling books, including the first two editions of Flawless Consulting, Stewardship, Community, and The Empowered Manager. He is a partner in Designed Learning, a training company that offers his personally designed workshops that help to build the skills outlined in his books.

Table of Contents

What?s New
A Consultant by Any Other Name .
Some Definitions and Distinctions
Consulting Skills Preview
The Promise of Flawless Consultation
Techniques Are Not Enough
Beyond Content
The Consultant?s Assumptions
The Consultant?s Goals
Roles Consultants Choose
Collaboration and the Fear of Holding Hands
Stating the Client?s Involvement--Step by Step
Checklist # 1. Assessing the Balance of Responsibility
Flawless Consulting
Being Authentic
Completing the Requirements of Each Phase
The Right to Fail
Contracting Overview
Contracting--The Concept and the Skill
Contracting Skills
Elements of a Contract
Checklist # 2. Analyzing One of Your Contracts
Ground Rules for Contracting
The Contracting Meeting
Who Is the Client?
Navigating the Contracting Meeting
When You Get Stuck
The Problem with Saying No
Contracting Checkpoint
Checklist #3. Planning a Contracting Meeting
Selling Your Services--Good Selling Is Good Contracting
The Meeting As a Model of How You Work
Closing the Contracting Meeting
After the Contracting Meeting
Checklist # 4. Reviewing the Contracting Meeting
The Agonies of Contracting
Dealing with Low Motivation
Ceaselsss Negotiation--The Shifting Tide of Your Role
Some Other Specific Agonies
The Virtual World
The Internal Consultant
Important Differences between Internal and Externam Consultants
Triangles and Rectangles
Understanding Resistance
The Faces of Resistance
What Are Clients Resisting When They Are Resisting Us?
Underlying Concerns
Sometimes It Is Not Resistance
The Fear and the Wish
Ogres and Angels
And Heroics
Dealing with Resistance
Three Steps
Don?t Take It Personally
Good Faith Responses
Consulting with a Stone
From Diagnosis to Discovery
It Is Still the Relationship That Counts
The Call to Action
The Problem Is Not the Problem
How the Problem Is Being Managed
Flawless Discovery.11 Whole System Discovery
Third-Party Consulting
Takng a Whole-System Approach
Putting Whole-System Discovery to Work
The Payoff
Discovering Gifts, Capacities and Possibilities
When All Else Fails
The Power of Positive Deviance
The Implications for Consulting
An Example of What Is Working
Get the Picture
The Steps in Getting the Picture
A Word about Bias
Assessing How the Situation Is Being Managed
The Discovery Interview
Levels of Analysis
Your Experience As Data
Checklist # 5. Planning a Discovery Meeting
Checklist # 6. Reviewing the Discovery Meeting
Preparing for Feedback
A Clear Picture May Be Enough
Condensing the Data
Some Do?s and Don?ts
Language in Giving the Picture
Presenting the Picture . . . As Courtroom Drama
Support and Confrontation
Managing the Meeting for Action
How to Present the Picture
Structuring the Meeting
The Meeting for Action--Step by Step
A Recap
Resistance in the Meeting
Checklist # 7. Planning a Meeting For Action
When the Group Is at Odds among Themselves
Checklist # 8. Reviewing the Meeting
Modeling the Meeting
Choosing Engagement over Installation
Deciding Doesn?t Get It Done
The Case Against Installation
Betting on Engagement
Elements of Engagement
The Meeting Is the Message
Eight Ways to Engage
The Point
Checklist # 9. Preparing for Implementation
Checklist # 10. Reviewing an Implementation Event
Consultant As Teacher
The Story
Assumptions about Motivating Students
The Reality
Taking a Consultant?s Stance
The Trip to Washington, DC
The Choice in the Matter
The Heart of the Matter
Choosing Learning over Teaching
Learning As a Social Adventure
The Struggle Is the Solution
The Question Is More Important Than the Answer
Beyond How
Insight Resides in Moments of Tension
Capacities Bear More Fruit Than Deficiencies
We Are Responsible for One Another?s Learning
Culture Changes in the Moment
If Change Is So Wonderful, Why Don?t You Go First?
The Final Question Is One of Faith
Suggestions for Further Reading
About the Author
About Designed Learning
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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