A guide to bringing in outside experts to develop leadership potential in your people

A guide to bringing in outside experts to develop leadership potential in your people
March 13, 2023 Linda Murray

Whether you’re going to work with outside experts for a short time or as an ongoing arrangement, it’s important to be clear on your working arrangements from the beginning.

Why work with an external leadership development training company?

For several reasons, working with an independent consultant can be a wise choice.

  • Expertise: filling skill or experience gaps in your organisation
  • Speed: help is immediate, and you don’t have to wait for a team member to be upskilled to do the job
  • Cost efficiency: you pay only for the project instead of having to fire a new employee.
  • Objectivity: an outside expert is free from the biases and assumptions your people pick up during their time at work.
  • New ideas: outside experts bring new ideas and new vision. They can offer independent feedback on people and projects.

Know what you need from them.

To get the best results for your money, gather your information first.

  • Define your objectives. What do you want to achieve? How will you measure your success?
  • Set your goals. Clear goals (follow the SMART principles) will help your expert work out the best way to achieve them and will also let you assess their performance against something measurable.
  • Define your timelines. Be clear on what you need to achieve and by when. Not only will this help keep you and your expert on track, but it will enable the expert to decide if the request is realistic.
  • Be clear on deliverables. Ask your consultant to state the services he or she will be providing, explain how the work will proceed, who will be working on the project (a team or an individual?) and what the fees do and do not cover.
  • Consider the fit. Ask your expert to show why he or she is the right person to work with your team. What similar experience have they had? How have they dealt with similar issues to those you are facing? You need to be confident the expert is right for your environment, your task and your people.

Start off on the right foot.

When you choose your expert, give them what they need to do the job properly.

  • Provide support. Your expert will need access to key stakeholders and people with vital information. Before the expert starts, make sure you have these important people available to help.
  • Provide all information. Depending on your project, this could be your mission statement, situation reports, staff profiles, team feedback or other key pieces of information. Too much information is better than too little.
  • Build your relationship. Your expert will rely on you as the point of control and needs to know you are open to feedback and ideas. They need your guidance, but they also need you to trust their advice.

Choose help from an outside expert could be the best thing you ever do for your organisation. Look for experience and sound reputation.

Athena Leadership Academy offers a range of award-winning methodologies, service offerings and a depth of experience well suited to working with both individuals and teams. As your partner, we know exactly how to identify and bring out the best in you and your people. Why not call to see how we can help you solve the problem you’re facing?

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