Consultant ≠ Insect

A Heinlein classic.

Looking for inspiration for slogging through a bunch of methodology reviews on gray, wet day, I went and found my favorite definition of consulting that doesn’t even use bullet points. It was originally from Robert A. Heinlein, so I updated it with great reverence and caution trying to stay close to the original idea, style, and cadence years ago. I also provided the original for fairness.

A Consultant should be able to: Care for clients, take over an account, review employees, rent a car, design an architecture, write a SOW, submit expenses, build a firewall, CPR, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, collaborate, act independently, solve equations, analyze a new problem, SALES, program a computer, order a tasty meal, fight efficiently, and die gallantly. Specialization is for insects. (adopted from Robert A. Heinlein).

The original is below.

A Consultant should be able to: Change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, and die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.  (Robert A. Heinlein)

I was honestly pleased when I read this quote that Mr. Heinlein had moved us consultants up the classification schema and above the insects. I hope I can keep his good faith. Of course the world can’t exist without insects, but it would probably make it without consultants.

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