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The Complete Idiot's Guide to Consulting [Paperback]

Robert Bacal

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Book Description

28 Jan 2002 The complete idiot's guide

Learning to market your expertise and still trying to pay your bills can be difficult! The Complete Idiot's Guide to Consulting provides a detailed and complete set of answers to questions from new consultants or those exploring the idea of consulting. From the first client to hiring more help, expert author Robert Bacal provides everything a consultant needs to know about sharing their expertise with a client and getting paid what they're worth. Coverage includes researching your reasons and assessing your skill sets; the real reason consulting works--the client and filling their needs; ethics, decision making, and contracts; ending projects and fixing them when they go wrong; starting up your own business; staying legal, solvent, and sane, plus professionalism, marketing and more; growing your business--getting more clients, fee structures, bad debt, etc., and managing the client relationship for short term--and long term--benefit.

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About the Author

Robert Bacal is an accomplished consultant, book author, trainer, and public speaker. His consulting career began 16 years ago when he was employed first as an instructional design consultant, and then as an organizational development consultant for government.

In 1992, Robert left government to start his own consulting firm, Bacal & Associates. While many small consulting firms have disappeared from the horizon, and their owners returned to regular jobs (or unemployment), Bacal & Associates continues to exist and thrive. Robert also holds a B.A. and M.A. in psychology, and has completed all course work for his Ph.D.

Robert Bacal is the author of The Complete Idiot's Guide To Dealing With Difficult Employees (Alpha Books) and Performance Management, a title in the Briefcase Books series (McGraw-Hill).

Under the imprint of Bacal & Associates, Bacal has also published The Defusing Hostile Customers Workbook and Conflict Prevention in the Workplace. Both books have been economic successes in limited distribution.

Other writing credits include a regular column in Today's Supervisor, and the use of his articles in a number of internal house publications. His articles have been syndicated on a paid basis on the Internet and he is often interviewed in the media.

Much of Bacal's success can be attributed to his consulting, business, and marketing strategies. In particular, his Internet involvement is a major tool in marketing his books and services. Bacal's main websites, http://www.work911.com and www.articles911.com, have hit the million visits mark in less than two years. Many of those visitors are looking for business and management related material.

Robert integrates his consulting, training services, and speaking engagements with the books he has authored, increasing visibility to increase book sales.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  6 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you want to get into consulting, this is the book. 22 April 2002
By John Woods - Published on Amazon.com
Every chapter in Robert Bacal's book rings with authenticity. It's clear he knows a lot about being a consultant. The book is very complete and has tons of practical advice for anyone contemplating becoming a consultant in any field. In fact, the book has real value to anyone thinking about going into business for him or herself, regardless of whether as a consultant or some other small business. It talks about realistically assessing your strengths, marketing yourself, consulting ethics, what the actual engagement will be like, dealing with clients (including the client from hell), what to charge, how to take advantage of the Internet to market your services and gain additional income streams and lots more. I can't imagine a book that would be more helpful to a potential consultant. And being a title in The Complete Idiot's Guides series, it's really easy to read. I highly recommend this book.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Useful for both new consultant and pro 15 Jan 2006
By John E. Lincoln - Published on Amazon.com
I too am a consultant with over 10 yrs full time, medical device / regulatory consulting. I must disagree w/ the one somewhat negative review. I too have a degree w/ minor in business, but I found much in the book that is useful. True, there is "nothing new under the sun" (including this quote -- Eccl 1:9b), but I found much useful information. And I have read (and own) most of the consulting books. Bacal's sections on ethics, website design and purpose, and people skills / explanations of real problems using not-so-fictitious dialog add to the genre. And it's all "field-tested". Most of us still aren't applying all the basics in our practice, so any reminders are always useful, and beneficial if applied. I recommend it to both new and established consultants.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great resource--even for those who aren't idiots! 9 May 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
I've been a consultant for 10 years now, but wanted to take an objective look at how I've been doing--this book helped me do that and gave me some great ideas that I need to try.
Not only was it a refresher for me; it was an eye opener. It's an easy read and incredibly detailed too. A great resource to refer to time and again for new ideas.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best books on the subject 22 April 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
I was expecting a light Complete Idiot's Guide treatment, but this book is anything but. This author covers it all -- and in a very realistic way. For those of us exploring going out on our own, we need real answers about getting and keeping clients, legal issues and business tips. This author has clearly been there and gives a complete picture of what you face, not some pie-in-the-sky idea of working for yourself.
2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Informative and user friendly.... 10 Sep 2003
By Neil J. Hajba - Published on Amazon.com
As a big fan of "The Complete Idiot's Guide" series and Independent Consultant in the Social Service sector, I found this book to be a great starting place for anyone considering a career as a consultant or independent contractor.
Between this book and some of the Nolo series books, you can access basically any information and tools on starting, running, managing, and promoting yourself in both the public and private sectors.
Filled with basic yet essential information and ideas. Highly recommended!
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