Building Relationships – Consulting Skills

Building Relationships:
Consulting Skills For The IT Professional

Have you ever proudly delivered a project on-time to a client, only to hear, “It’s nice, but it’s not what we were looking for …” or “It’s okay, but it needs a lot of rework …”?

According to the Project Management Institute (PMI), a lack of clear and precise communications is the primary reason most projects never get off the ground or are rejected upon completion. Most IT and technical professionals understand the importance of asking the “right” questions in the early phases of project development, but few realize what descriptors such as “cheap,” “tweak” and “user-friendly” really meant until the project has experienced a breakdown. Even fewer IT and technical professionals have been trained in how to structure questions, from the beginning, to clarify agreed-upon criteria for success.

In this communication workshop, participants will learn and practice techniques for establishing and maintaining rapport with clients and team members in face-to-face and virtual environments. Participants will also discover how to add flexibility to their interpersonal style, how to conduct clear and open communications, and how to elevate “listening in the moment” to an art form.

Duration:

This training program is 1.5 days (12 hours of training).

Instructor/Class Size Ratio:

This training program has a ratio of 1 instructor to 20-24 participants.

Intended For:

This training program is designed for IT and technical professionals, as well as business analysts, who need to build collaborative working relationships. The program is focused on learning and practicing specific interpersonal skills, establishing rapport, and determining clearly-defined and agreed-upon performance criteria at the beginning of projects.

Objectives:

After completing this training program, participants will be able to:
guide clients through an effective 7-step questioning technique in order to understand the client’s realistic needs versus their perceived wants
demonstrate techniques used to establish and maintain rapport in person, on the phone, and in virtual meetings
practice active listening
discover the big picture affect of any new or changed processes or procedures
determine how to collaborate with individuals who have different work styles and strategies
apply interpersonal skills in the virtual environment
practice flexibility in communications

Topics:

practicing an effective 7-step questioning technique to assist in defining a client’s real needs versus their perceived wants
clarifying vague wording in how the client describes his/her desired outcomes
asking the right questions, using the right language patterns
determining the most realistic and appropriate acceptance criteria at the beginning of projects
practicing 3 easy-to-follow techniques to become a focused, proactive listener
establishing and maintaining rapport with clients and team members
using interpersonal skills in virtual and face-to-face meetings
building collaborative relationships with clients
assuring that acceptance criteria is in compliance with the enterprise-wide guidelines

Pre-Work Requirements And Guidelines Summary:

In this communications training program, participants will have the opportunity to practice numerous interpersonal skills. Part of the time, they’ll be in the role of “IT / Technical Consultant,” and the remainder of the time, they’ll be in the role of the “Client.” The best way to practice these communication skills is with role-play scenarios that relate to specific projects. Rather than using “generic,” pre-written scenarios, we’ll guide you to personalize the scenarios for maximum effectiveness. Detailed pre-work requirements, which should take no more than 15 minutes, will be provided prior to the beginning of the course.

For more information on building relationships / consulting skills training, please call (303) 458-8305, or e-mail tom@tomdearth.com.

Please note: We also offer a 2-day training program for IT and technical professionals on making effective and persuasive business presentations.