CONSCIENTIOUS CONSULTANT…OR CONTROL FREAK?!

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I know what you’re going to say, dialling in to conference calls when on holiday is absolutely the mark of a control freak…I know, I know…

In my defence, or just to justify myself a little (even if only to myself), I rarely do it (checking my BlackBerry…now that’s a different story).

In a very Carrie Bradshaw kind of way, I ask myself, does being a consultant mean that you should remain detached and switch off as soon as you leave your desk?

For many years I thought this was the case. In my early years as a freelance consultant I would sit in meetings and see clearly (with a wry and knowing smirk) how I would have typically risen to the combative question or misunderstood remark; almost as though I was having an out of body experience – viewing each scene as though I was not taking part it in.

And now, 14 years later, I find myself, all too often, being the (sometimes overly) passionate defender of the right thing to do, as though my career development or bonus depended on it. It doesn’t; I benefit from neither.

So why do it?

I guess it comes down to wanting things to go well, being passionate about my projects and generally having pride in my work (otherwise why do it!). And that doesn’t change whether you’ve built the company from scratch yourself, are building a career in a large organisation or are helping out on a short term basis. Though let’s face it, as a consultant – without a fixed term contract (even if you’re lucky enough, like me, for regular renewal) – you’re only as good as your last campaign and the door is only ever a week away.

Having said all that, I am very well aware that I am, in no uncertain terms, a bit of a control freak – as many a colleague, client or agency partner will attest to!

Also, and certainly a discussion for another day, should anyone be dialling in to conference when on holiday?!

* BlackBerry featured is not my beloved PRIV but the ‘work phone’. 

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