What to Consider Before You Hire a Consulting Firm

3 Questions to choose the best-fitting firm for your company


Hey there leaders!

I am blessed to help run one of the best consulting companies in the world. Yes, I’m biased and yes, I’m in charge, so I’m super biased, but I know more about them than you, so I’ll keep my bias – thank you! In my role, our clients put a lot of trust in my opinion and insight to help guide them. Pragmatic Works focuses on defining outcomes with our clients, if you’ve been reading here you know how important I think that is! 

I often find myself on the other end of a call that goes like this:

Client: “Adam, we’re looking to bring in a firm to do this amazing new initiative and we didn’t think that was in your wheelhouse. Is that correct?”How to hire a consulting firm | Woman writing on a dry erase window

Me: “That’s true, but we do know some companies we can recommend or we can help you evaluate how they will fit with your organization. We work really well with your teams and management, and I want to make sure that you get that experience with whoever else you bring in.”

Client: ”Well, that’s why I’m calling. We’ve already narrowed down to the short list, and they all seem qualified; so we are looking for some insider knowledge to avoid any issues down the road. We expect a 2-3 year relationship with this new firm since this is a new business initiative and we need to meet the right team.”

Me: “Well, to keep your investment level down, why don’t I do a call with your decision and vetting team, and I’ll give them some insight into how I evaluate firms. Then if you’d like us to get more involved, I’m happy to work with you on a plan. I think after the call you’ll be well set up for success, since I know your team and firm pretty well by now.”

Client: “Sounds good. I’ll set it up this week.”

Now I needed to prepare for this call, so I sat down with my team and start brainstorming things that made us a great fit for this client as well as things we respected when working with partners and other firms. After an hour it came down to three categories of questions.


Servant leadership: 4 Traits of the best servant leaders

Leading by definition is serving others


You’ve heard people say “to lead is to serve.” I love how John Maxwell put it, “True leadership must be for the benefit of the followers, not to enrich the leader.” I’m blessed to have John be a teaching pastor at our church and hear from him a few times a year. He is definitely someone I think all leaders should be listening to help keep their ideas in the right perspective.

In this post I’m going to talk about how we take some of these nice quotes from famous leaders and realize the purpose behind leading with a servant’s heart. Now some of you might be thinking, “How can I serve and lead? I don’t get it. Is this some biblical concept?”


Management vs. Leadership: My team’s lunchtime debate

Plus 4 questions to examine the relationship between leading and managing


Last week I was making lunch in our kitchen at work and two of my managers came in while in the midst of a hot debate. One we’ll call Bobby said, “Management and leadership are two different things. How can you say they are the same?”

“I’m not saying that. I’m saying they go together and that they can’t really be disentangled. I don’t know how to explain this to you, but I know what I’m talking about,” replied the other whom we’ll call Sharron.

My yummy pulled pork lunch (I’m a bit of a grill master) would have to wait because this was a great conversation that I wasn’t going to miss. I listened for a few minutes as they debated, and quickly realized that they were using points that I had taught each of them over the past year against each other.