Brienna and Cassandra, pull free from the persistent claws of death and continue their pursuit of honest consulting. They have learned their lesson with classy brandy and have thus taken up a new vice, play-doh. It is not that they eat it, nor liquify it and apply it to steaks as a salty sauce, no, they roll it…constantly.
Cassandra: I think I like play-doh better than brandy. (She rolls her play doh into a slug.)
Brienna: yes…there is a certain peace to it. (she rolls one slowly into a blue log then very suddenly slams her fist down, flattening the perfect roll before starting again.)
Cassandra: Yes it makes me think about all the consultations that I’ve done. Although I have to admit, not all of them went well.
Every now and then, consultants come to a point where they can go no farther with a client. Cassandra and I have tagged this moment as the ‘failure moment’. While it isn’t technically failure, it tends to give the consultant a similar feeling.
Brienna: The good thing about play-doh, is that there is no failure. If you screw up, you just start again and reform it. I think this method can be applied to consulting.
Cassandra: In what way? I don’t think you can start over an appointment just because it’s not going well.
Brienna: Well, start over no, but reform your approach, definitely. Just as you might reform the play-doh when the dog you were making looks more like a demon grandma.
Cassandra:That makes sense, because I had to do the same thing when I failed in my first consultation. It did not go well…
Brienna: Please Cassandra, tell me more…(she makes a lopsided house, then smashes it with her hand and starts again).
Cassandra: Well a client came in asking for me to review his paper. I looked over his paper and saw a lot of inconsistencies, and when I pointed them out I don’t think he understood. I tried to explain in multiple ways but I think that only made things worse. It could be because he wasn’t a native speaker, but I took it as me not being able to explain my reasonings well enough. Continue reading