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Managing Contract Consultants: Do’s, Don’ts, and a Dash of Fun!

Managing contract consultants can be an exciting yet challenging task—like orchestrating a well-tuned symphony where every instrument plays its part perfectly.

Don't fret, we have some tips to make this process as smooth as your morning coffee or tea. 🍵Let's get right into the do’s and don’ts of managing contract consultants, with a bit of humor to keep things light!

GPS is like a technical writer, editor or consultant

The Do’s

1. Clear Communication is Key

Do: Start with a kick-off meeting to outline expectations, deliverables, and timelines. It’s like giving your GPS a destination—it’ll get you there faster if it knows where you’re going!

2. Set Milestones and Check-Ins

Do: Establish regular check-ins and milestones. Think of these as the pit stops in a race; they ensure everyone is fueled up and on the right track (sorry we have racing in our family.. had to throw this in there!).

3. Provide Necessary Resources

Do: Equip your consultant with all the tools and information they need.

4. Offer Feedback and Support

Do: Provide constructive feedback and be available for questions. I usually recommend the very technical method of sandwiching a message. Start with a positive, put the negatives in the middle, and end with a positive note or feedback.

5. Celebrate Achievements

Do: Recognize and celebrate accomplishments. A little appreciation can go a long way. Plus, who doesn’t love a good pat on the back or an electronic gift card for a free coffee?

The Don’ts

1. Don’t Micromanage

Don’t: Hover over their shoulder like a helicopter parent. Trust them to do their job and check in weekly. Remember, you hired a consultant for their expertise, use it!

2. Don’t Change the Scope Midway

Don’t: Move the goalposts halfway through the project. Or if this is necessary, adjust expectations of time and effort and show appreciation for their flexibility.

3. Don’t Ignore Boundaries

Don’t: Treat them like full-time employees. Respect their work hours and boundaries. Remember, they have other clients, and possibly a life after work!

4. Don’t Forget the Human Touch

Don’t: Treat your consultant like a robot. Engage with them on a human level. Ask about their day, family, hobbies, share a laugh, and remember, they’re part of the team too!

Bonus Material if you read this far...

A Joke to Lighten the Mood

How many consultants does it take to change a light bulb? None. They’ll tell you to outsource it. 😂😎🌞

Managing contract consultants doesn’t have to be a stressful ordeal. With stellar communication, good resources, and a bit of appreciation, you have the foundation for a great project and deliverable. So, go forth and manage those consultants like a pro—and don’t forget to share some humor along the way!


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