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I just need to vent about consultants....

By Menace65 ·
I have been placed on a project by my company because (as they say), they wanted the "best of the best" to make this project a success. Nevermind that we had no choice on the matter (which is another vent altogether). This vent has to do with consultants, and their feelings of entitlement when they get to a job site. I am a part of the technical team, and in my previous life, I did technical support for the company. It has been part of my responsibility to support the project members with technical, it seems, I am also to supply the consultants with mice, keyboards, monitors, power supplies for laptops, etc., etc. It is not uncommon for me to find that computers I set up in a conference room are missing various I search to find out where they walked off to, and lo and behold one of the consultants is using the mouse, keyboard, whatever. Is this normal practice for consultants to just TAKE whatever they want? Why the **** don't they come equipped with their own stuff? The last straw was one consultant who forgot his power supply to his laptop at his home (in another state), he asked me if I had a spare, and I responded no (did think I could just pull one out of my ***?), obviously he didn't like that answer so he proceeded to start looking around my cubicle for one that I was obviously hiding from him. I *suggested* he order one online to be shipped overnight (would probably cost about $50) and he immediately shot down my suggestion. From now on, this jackass is on his own. At this point, I just keep chanting to myself, "Yes, this project will end, this project will end..!"

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Not all consultants...

by mark In reply to I just need to vent about ...

IT Chick, I make my living as a "consultant." Having been on your side of the fence before going this route, I feel your pain. I certainly can't speak for anyone but myself, but I would never do any of the things you mention. I consider my association with a client to be a partnership, and alienating the staff I'm supposed to work with only makes my job harder. I don't want those in your position to be pining for the project to end knowing that I'll be gone.

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Same here

by stress junkie In reply to Not all consultants...

I worked as a consultant/contract employee for 15 years. I always felt that my job included working with the direct employees. I worked many different jobs/assignments in large companies like Digital Equipment Corporation and small ones, so I've met a lot of other consultants. As a group I think that we are pretty much like any other sample set of society.

ITChick, I don't think that you need to vent about consultants as much as you do about the generally poor state of people's attitudes. By that I mean that it is not limited to consultants. A lot of people are rude, self centered, and other unflattering stuff.


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Another old DECie, eh?

by mark In reply to Same here

Hey Stress Junkie, I'm an old DECie too. Rolling Meadows, IL. in the early 80s. I worked field service on PDP8s.

Good to see one of the old gang here!

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Yes I am old. :-)

by stress junkie In reply to Another old DECie, eh?

Yes I worked at lots of different DEC facilities in Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire for many years. I never got to work in The Mill, though. I did work in the hallowed halls of ZKO many times (VMS Development, Spitbrook Rd., Nashua, NH). :-)

DEC employed a huge percentage of the tech talent in this area. When the DEC board of trustees and Bob Palmer deliberately destroyed the company it really messed up the economy around here. Bastards. They should be in prison.

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I have been both a consultant and a direct

by Tig2 In reply to Not all consultants...

I carry my office with me- pens, paper, post-its, as well as general equipment.

I have been somewhat dismayed to find the client's employees taking and using MY things- one even said that their company supplied it, what was my problem? Their company didn't supply it, I did.

The other side of that is that I don't think it is acceptable to put a project in danger over a $0.49 post it pad.

I am not there as a consultant to make the project a living ****. I am there to deliver. I will do whatever I have to in order to accomplish that goal. My next association may depend on it.

Now I clearly mark my belongings, and carry most of them home in my bag. I purchase pink ribbon marked office supplies- and I am generally the only person that will come within miles of them. I have a spare battery and spare power supply. My keyboard is flexible and can be rolled up and put in my bag at the end of the day.

I understand that the consultants that you are dealing with are a trial. I have dealt with consultants that truly amazed me so I understand some of what you are going through. But not all of us can be painted with the same brush.

Edit typo

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Re: Not all consultants

by waltjones40 In reply to Not all consultants...

I have to agree with levy. I'm a consultant and alienating the staff or management of my customers is a good way to lose business. The consultant you're dealing with is boorish at best and an idiot. Anyone willing to jepordize a contract over a keyboard and mouse shouldn't be in the business. I make it a point to carry my tools with me and if I need to borrow something, I get permission first.

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One bad seed ...

by Dave.J-S In reply to Not all consultants...

I have spent a great deal of my working career as a consultant and though I have encountered the type of person you describe, I can honestly say that out of all the contracts I have worked and consultants I have met and worked with, this behaviour has been the rare exception to the rule.

Maybe I have been lucky but I know I would NEVER do something like that. If I am on a client's site, I am a guest in someone else's home. I have been 2+ years on site for projects and nothing changes. That kind of behaviour is rude and insulting, though it may not be intentional.

The handful of people I have met who behave this way have all had some other type of issues ranging from god complexes to poor interpersonal skills even though they may have been stunning when it came to the quality of the work they did.

My suggestion is to take the people who rub you the wrong way with a grain of salt. I truly believe that you will find they are in the extreme minority and I for one would not want you to get the wrong opinion of us.

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Thanks for the bad name...

by mloucel In reply to Not all consultants...

I hope you have never be in our side of the fence, I've a consultant for almost 20 years, I've always been clear with my customers and always take good care of them, but you know the old saying: "If the river sound, it may have rocks", could it be that your hands are not so clean and you are trying to cover the sun with one finger, maybe your soul is not so clean and you are just trying to blame someone else for your own faults, if that is the case look for help..

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At what consultants make......

by hanes_ray In reply to Thanks for the bad name.. ...

Get them what they need. Trust me no one in your company is going to want to hear that 2 hours of billable time was wasted due to not being able to get hardware when they know the hardware exsists within the company!

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by NickNielsen In reply to At what consultants make. ...

It's bloody stupid to take a job, then show up not prepared to do that job. Everywhere I ever worked, any consultant who lost time from not having all his tools or equipment was charged back for that time.

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