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Posts Tagged ‘consulting’

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Yesterday I went to the 35th year anniversary celebration of the founding in Vancouver of SRK.  It was a grand affair in a fancy hotel overlooking the harbor.  Andy Robertson and Jim Robertson (no relation) who were the two originals were both there.  (more…)

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As a consultant you can only advise.  You cannot force.  You can only provide your professional opinion.  You cannot make the client do the right thing.  You can set out facts and possible consequences.  You cannot make the outcome be what you desire or believe it should be. (more…)

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Modern personnel management demands performance review.  There is a vast literature on the topic. And so I write nothing new or substantial here. (more…)

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In recent years we have seen more and more of what I choose to call the international take-over artists consulting companies.  They grow by buying smaller companies.  Their funding may be self-generated, raised on the stock market, or loaned from venture capitalists.  (more…)

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I am back in Santiago, having barely survived the long flights, excess food & drink in Business Class, and the two hours getting through Chile Immigration & Customs.  Seems like twelve planes arrived at the same time; I have never seen an airport anywhere as crowded and slow.  This is part of the life of a mining consultant: lots of glamour at the expense of extreme patience in line to see surly passport inspectors and those who believe you are smuggling packets of peanuts.  (more…)

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Today I rode up the trail between the trees & ferns dappled by sun & blue sky.  After a long uphill climb with leg muscles screaming in pain, I came on the downhill section.  Changing gears, I sped up and sped faster and faster down.  Coming on a turn I have taken many times, something went wrong. (more…)

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In a previous posting on this blog, I listed some attributes of a good consultant.  I shared the list with a young engineer who has worked in the trenches of a construction site, in the offices of a prestigious consultant, and who is now working for a large mining company.  In their role with the mining company, they retain and manage many consultants.  Their comments on this list included the following:

  • That is a great list, but it is hard to find many consultants of such ability.
  • If you find such skilled consultants, they are inevitably very busy and need to rely on many juniors of lesser skills.
  • Any rate, even the best consultant, if not properly managed, does not succeed.
  • Select your consultants carefully and then meet with them often, listen to what they advise, and give them detailed direction.
  • You must integrate their advice into the bigger picture; for they cannot possibly have the full picture of the entire project and company prospective.
  • It is necessary to rapidly read any documents from your consultant and to comment in detail thereon.  They are entitled to rely on your application, input, and perspective.
  • You must seek to learn from your consultant, and seek to give them opportunities to learn from you.
  • If both you and your consultant learn from the project, you may both go forward to the next project and greater productivity and success.

These are smart observations.  As a consultant seeking to provide services to a client, you cannot always select your client, but maybe you can exhort them to these ways of managing you.

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Yesterday I lunched with three young engineers.  Two have master’s degrees and the third is well on his way.  Food was ususal Vancouver fare for hungry men: bento box filled with rice, sushi, tempura, and meat in deep, dark sauce. (more…)

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On the plane from Seattle to Vancouver:  she sat next to me; she was tall, and ginger, with the white skin and freckles of the perfect.  She told me she is a geologist en route to a weekend with her boyfriend, also a geologist doing a masters at the University of British Columbia (UBC) in exploration geology on a scholarship from Hunter Dickinson.  (more…)

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(This is the painting of the martyrdom of Saint Lawrence–kind of like working in a consulting company.)

A long weekend of sun and friends with walks in the woods and to the Bard on the Beach production of The Merchant of Venice.  In deep discussion with our friends who now live in Costa Rica, we argued about Mentoring in Mining (and other) Consulting. Her daughter works for one of those big international consulting companies that focuses on the mining industry and other geotechnical and environmental markets.  Her ex-husband too used to work for the same company until he joined the big mining house in London, whence he now flies all over the world to control consultants. (more…)

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