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Business Development

Five Phase Proposal

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Tatum is a national consulting firm that provides interim Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) to companies in transition. We worked for several Tatum Partners and had an informal referral arrangement with them. In this case, a Tatum Partner called us into a turnaround situation where employee morale was terrible. Besides helping the team, we provided executive coaching to the CEO.

February 7, 20—

Austin Villaverde
Chief Financial Officer
Dent Germany
9500 Washington Blvd
Chicago, IL 60607-2224

Project: Finding the Answers to Getting Morale and Productivity Back on Track


Thank you for your information and insight yesterday.  Here is the approach we'll take to accomplish your project.

Phase One -  

  • We'll meet with representatives of your executive team to decide which questions to ask employees. We'll come prepared with survey questions that produced good results in the past.  We'll specifically look to pinpoint issues affecting productivity, morale, and the future of Dent Germany.

Phase Two -  

  • We'll put these questions into an online survey tool that guarantees anonymity and will produce reports that are useful for planning.
  • Once the survey is designed we'll meet with your staff to explain the purpose of the survey, the confidentiality, the deadline for response, and the importance of this activity to the organization. We'll also share how to use the survey tool.  Our job will be to get them excited about participating. Your team will also get them excited by explaining how you will apply the results.

Phase Three -  

  • We'll compile the results in a report format for review by the executive team.

Phase Four -  

  • We'll meet with the executive team to review the results and develop a targeted plan to address the items in priority. This meeting will focus on what affects you the most, and what you can do both quickly and in the long term with this information.

Austin Villaverde
February 7, 20—
Page Two  

Phase Five

  • You will be able to re-administer the same survey in four to six months to see if your initiatives are working and what progress you are making.
  • Using these follow up reports you can make course corrections and see what roadblocks persist.

Consulting Team
Janell Vant will be the lead consultant on the project, and her bio is attached. I will team with Janell and will be available to you any time.

Professional Fees
Phases One - Four are normally priced at $3,000. As a Tatum Partner, you are eligible for a 15% discount ($450), bringing the price to $2550. Phase Five will be priced later if you decide to do a follow-on survey. The fee is paid 50% ($1275) in advance, the balance on completion.

This will be an exciting project, Austin. Please return a signed copy of this agreement to me by mail or fax (303-790-0606), and let's get started.

With best wishes,


Austin Villaverde, Chief Financial Officer | Date

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William S. Frank, M.A.,
25 Reasons I love consulting.
by William S. Frank
  1. Brand. You are your own brand, and you can define it any way you want. For many years, I provided outplacement to the ex-employees of Schlumberger, the world's largest oilfield service corporation. When departing employees left the company, they didn't request outplacement in their severance package. They said, "I want Bill Frank."
  2. Demand. The world will always be full of terrible problems that need solving.
  3. White Hat. I can be a helper and get paid for it.
  4. Pay. I can be paid to do things I'd gladly do for nothing.
  5. Variety. Every day is different.
  6. Happiness. At this stage of my career, I only work for people I respect and care about. If a client micromanages me or is otherwise no fun, I complete the assignment and replace them.
  7. Talent. I'm using 110% of my talents and stretching myself to the max.
  8. Change. I can change my focus any day I want. If you're a McDonald's franchisee, you don't say, "Hey, I've got this great idea for a meatball sandwich—let's try it out today." In consulting you can adjust your focus hour-by-hour, as long as your clients still understand and appreciate what you do.
  9. Income. No one else would pay me as much as I pay myself.
  10. FUN. I can't think of anything I'd rather be doing.
  11. Retirement. I can write and consult as long as I am physically and mentally capable. Peter Drucker worked into his 90s, and when asked which book was his best, he said: "My next one."
  12. Job Security. Although clients come and go, no one can come into my office and say, "Pack up your stuff . . . You don't work here anymore." In 29 years, I've only had one employer: ME.
  13. Travel. I don't have to travel unless I decide to. I travel if it's both FUN and profitable—or at least FUN.
  14. Commute. I live five minutes from my office, a corner office in an upscale six-story tower. In winter, I leave a heated garage at home and drive to an underground heated garage at work. There's seldom time to hear even one song on the radio.
  15. Vacation. Consulting is more fun than vacation (except on Wailea Beach in Maui).
  16. Friends. I have developed hundreds of close acquaintances and several lifetime friends.
  17. Time. I can work as much or as little as I like: four-hour days or 18-hour days. (Of course, my income will reflect that.)
  18. Employees. I can work with employees, subcontractors, partners, or alone—I've done it all.
  19. Passive Income. I've developed several products that provide "mailbox money." I earn while I'm sleeping.
  20. Ethics. I've never had to violate my values or personal code of ethics. I've never had to lie, purposely deceive or harm others, or promise things I can't deliver. I go to bed with a clear conscience. That doesn't mean there's never any conflict. But the conflict is conducted according to generally accepted business practices.
  21. Virtual. My career is fairly portable. With the Internet, e-mail, cell phone, and FedEx, I can work nationally, even internationally from my office—or anywhere in the world.
  22. Purpose. I make a difference in peoples' lives every day. I see it in their faces, hear it in their voices, and read it in their thank-yous.
  23. Experience. Every painful or joyful life experience makes me a better consultant. So does every person I meet or book I read. Grey hair can be good in consulting.
  24. Structure. I have to work very hard, and the clients expect superb results—but I get to structure my days, weeks, months, and years.
  25. Boss. Most of the time, I love my boss.
As I was posting these letters online, I realized I want to communicate my love for consulting. It's just a great business. The single letters, taken together, may create a picture of enjoyment, but in a burst of creativity I listed some of the reasons consulting is such a good fit for me—and perhaps for you, too. They are not prioritized; this is just how they came out.