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Business Development

Proposal That Produced Big Engagement #2

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Debra had been a longstanding business friend. When she expected an upcoming layoff, we first offered a simple one-page proposal, shown on the previous page. Later, the company asked for something more detailed, and we supplied a two-page version, shown below. We ultimately delivered $75,000 in consulting to this company. Notice the simple language and brevity. Jackson was a CareerLab consultant.

March 27, 20—

Debra Black
Director of Human Resources
Forster-Gerber-Smyth Management Company
1000 Broadway, Ste 1200
Denver, Colorado  80203

Dear Debra,

Jackson and I really enjoyed meeting you, Robert, Nancy, and Tammy yesterday afternoon.  We felt you asked some great questions and had a good handle on what was happening.  We were pleased to see the energy you are putting into planning.  That will pay off big time during the transition.

Here is the outline of the outplacement programs and prices we discussed:

Outplacement Workshops
Two-day training program for non-exempt personnel $1200/day = $2400.

We said we could accommodate up to 20 participants in any workshop, and the training fee includes all workshop materials.  We agreed that you would provide meeting rooms for the presentations, either in your facility or in a hotel nearby.  Of course, CareerLab's training facility is always available at no charge.  Although we didn't discuss it, employers normally provide an overhead projector, TV/VCR, and flip chart for us, as well as lunch for the participants.

Workplace Violence Workshop for Managers
We will provide a two-hour on-site briefing for managers covering the scope of the problem, myths about workplace violence , profiles of attackers, signs and signals of violence, and what to do to prevent and de-escalate violence.  The program will be taught by Dr. David Jeffers, one of the country's leading experts on workplace violence.  (His bio is included in our silver folder.)  $500

Resume Development
Editing and critique, word processing with up to three major rewrites, and 100 laser-printed resumes.  $75 per participant.  Posting a resume to more than 200 Internet resume talent banks increases the price to $125.

[More below . . . ]

Forster-Gerber-Smyth Management Company
March 27, 20--
Page Two 

Books and Materials
We recommended these two books for non-exempt employees:
  1. Resume Repair Kit: $19.95
  2. 200 Letters for Job Hunters: $19.95. And we recommended an additional book for exempt workers:
  3. The Perfect Interview: $17.95
All participants will have access to CareerLab's 6-Part Video Series (Getting HIRED), both during the workshop and afterwards at our career center.  

Non-exempt Counseling
Up to four (4) hours each per person:  $150/hour

Exempt Counseling
One-on-one coaching in all aspects of the job search, covering all workshop topics, plus special options like small business startup and working at home:  $2500 per person.

CareerLab HelpLine
For six months after the programs are completed, your employees will have access to our toll free HelpLine:  1-800-723-WORK.

As we said, we would like to have at least one consultant on site the day termination announcements are made.  That gives us a chance to explain our services and provide support and emergency assistance if necessary.  Our fee for this is $100 per hour.

Debra, I hope this includes everything we discussed.  If it does not, please let me know.  After you've had a chance to review this proposal, I'll give you a call to see how you would like to proceed.

We're looking forward to taking care of you and your employees and making this project a big success.

With best wishes,

William S. Frank


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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.