If you're planning to hire a blogging consultant, think twice before signing up the contract. Companies and individuals often hire an expert to either raise a blog from scratch or to rejuvenate an existing one. In both the cases, the results expected from the customer end are more or less the same. Hiring a blogging consultant is an important process especially if you're signing up a long duration contract. We're going to discuss some of the top qualities of an experienced blogging consultant. Some of these qualities can be quantified instantly, while others can only be weighed when you work with the person. Let's take a look at some of the traits, a good blogging consultant possess.
Good Listening CapabilitiesThis is one of the most important prerequisites for a capable blogging consultant. As a service provider, before you start applying your expertise, listening to customer requirements, thoughts and plans is vital for the success of the project.
Before you hire a blogging consultant, arrange for a short telephonic call and monitor how patiently he listens and notes your thoughts. This also includes how frequently he interrupts you or tries to divert the issue you want to discuss with him. This assessment call can save you big money in case you've approached a wrong person.
Ability to Explain Things in Layman's LanguageGenerally, customers are not aware of various terminologies and technology related to blogging. It's always a challenging task for the blogging consultant to make his client understand a technical issue so that a decision can be made. Sometimes, issues are non-technical in nature but still it involves various terminologies that a client doesn't understand at all. Some gentlemen prefer to use fancy technical terms to impress their clients while discussing a strategy.
A good blogging consultant tackles this situation in an intuitive way. The best strategy adopted in such cases is to compare the issue in hand with a simpler and generic incident or system experienced or used in daily life. For example, if you want to explain about limited bandwidth availability in the current hosting plan, you can compare it with the petrol availability in the car. Simplifying things for a technically challenged customer is one of the best qualities of a good blogging consultant.
Provides Data/Statistics to Justify a StrategyWhile formulating a blogging strategy for the clients, consultants often come up with several options for resolving or addressing a specific issue. Solutions are shortlisted and are pondered upon for their efficiency and outcomes. That's where supporting data or statistics are so vital to justify the proposed solutions.
These documents can only be produced when the consultant has done the research or is experienced enough to provide the case studies of similar issues. Simply proposing a solution makes no sense (especially when decent money is involved) until you support its effectiveness through a concrete data set. If you're getting relevant supporting documents and statistics for the proposed solution, you've chosen a right blogging consultant.
Technically SoundHere we are not talking about hardcore web programming or about configuration of an advanced setup on an unmanaged dedicated server. It's true that your blogging consultant must be familiar with all major blogging technologies, but you cannot expect him to be an expert in every single technology related to blogging. Having said that, one must ensure that your consultant possess good understanding of every concept and have the ability to get it done through an expert without any glitch.
You can test and can get some idea about your consultant's technical abilities even before signing up the contract. The assessment call we discussed in the first section can be used for this purpose. Simply talk about a custom solution that needs additional software or configuration along with a regular and standard implementation. See how he reacts to this and what solution he proposes. Once you're satisfied with the answer, you can definitely go ahead with the hiring process.
Respects Deadlines and Time FramesProjects often fail due to mismanagement of time. A good blogging consultant always provide time frames for each task (except few) to deliver the results within a limited time period. If your consultant is hesitating in providing deadlines for implementing common tasks, probably he is not capable enough. Few tasks like pulling X amount of traffic from search engines can never be completed in a definite time frame.
For everything else, your consultant must create a calendar and deadlines so that your blog is up and running with all the necessary customizations in time. This also includes his availability for various consulting sessions. If he is giving a time for a consultation call or a video-based training session, he must be present beforehand to entertain the customer's query. Sometimes, a person cannot make it in time, but frequent absence and missed deadlines are a big no for a blog consulting business.