Million Dollar Consulting® Mindset
From Alan Weiss
Volume 2 Number 8
A monthly newsletter with the objective of quickly and pragmatically helping consultants to improve their craft, results, and lives.
Creating A Proposal
There are nine parts to a proposal, requiring about 2.5 pages, no matter what the size of the project:
- SITUATION APPRAISAL: This is a paragraph about why the client needs the project, e.g., attrition is too high.
(NOTE: #2, 3, and 4 were covered last month in terms of conceptual agreement.)
- OBJECTIVES: The desired outcomes of the project, e.g., turnover below industry averages.
- METRICS: Indications of progress and success, e.g., monthly personnel report.
- VALUE: The impact of meeting the objectives, e.g., savings of $400,000 per year, or making it easier to attract talent.
- METHODOLOGY AND OPTIONS: Differing ways in which you can meet the basic objectives and offer still additional value, e.g., interviewing people who have left to find patterns.
- TIMING: How long in elapsed time each options would probably require, e.g., 60-90 days.
- JOINT ACCOUNTABILITIES: What you and the client, independently and jointly, are accountable to provide for project success, e.g., access to key people, 24-houre responsiveness.
- TERMS AND CONDITIONS: The fee for each option and how it is to be paid, plus expense reimbursement provisions.
- ACCEPTANCE: Choice of an option and acceptance of all provisions included.
September 6, 2012
Greater New York City area
Don't miss this one-of-a-kind opportunity to improve your consulting skills, raise your fees, and decrease labor intensity, which includes a free teleconference:
A client paid me half the fee ($125,000) on commencement, and the other half ($125,000) in 45 days, as specified under "terms and conditions" above, yet never signed the contract.
At the conclusion of the project within the six-month agreed time span, I asked why he never signed the document. He said, "I can authorize $125,000 checks, but I'm not allowed to sign a legal document. If I sent this to the legal department, we'd still be waiting for it."
I now place in my "acceptance" category (#9): "Your payment and choice of an option also indicates acceptance of the terms and conditions herein." That way, I can proceed with merely payment and no signature!
Frequently Asked Question
Q. What do I do when my own lawyer insists on legalese and "boilerplate" in my proposals to protect me?
A. Get a new lawyer. Once you do that it's guaranteed to go to the client's legal department and you'll jeopardize the fees, the timing, and even the project itself. It's not needed unless you're a lawyer trying to earn your hourly fee.
© Alan Weiss 2012. All rights reserved.
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