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Information Consulting - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9781843346623, 9781780632858

Information Consulting

1st Edition

Guide to Good Practice

Authors: Irene Wormell Annie Olesen Gábor Mikulás
eBook ISBN: 9781780632858
Paperback ISBN: 9781843346623
Imprint: Chandos Publishing
Published Date: 5th October 2011
Page Count: 216
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Table of Contents

List of figure and tables


About the authors

Chapter 1: What is information consulting?


An information professional: to be or not to be1

The possible roles: the demands on which information consultants reflect

Consulting encompasses a wide range of roles and activities

Chapter 2: Advantages: why information consulting might appeal to you


Sense of control over one’s time

Sense of reward from helping clients

Satisfaction from leveraging one’s experience

Freedom from corporate politics

Freedom to ‘pick and choose’

No ceilings on your earnings

Chapter 2 checklist

Chapter 3: Challenges: realities to consider


Uncertainty and anxiety

Uneven workloads

Need for flexibility and being available

‘Difficult’ clients

Proposed location

Finances: are the necessary resources in place?

Can you tolerate a slow ramp-up? Should you work part time or subcontract?

The degree is only the beginning

Are you a consulting personality?

Qualities that may trip you up

Chapter 3 checklist

Chapter 4: The starting point: make a business plan


General company description

Products and services, their features and benefits




The outlook for the targeted business sector




Distribution channels

Sales forecast

Identifying costs, funding and fees

Start-up expenses

Credit policies

Chapter 4 checklist

Chapter 5: The legal environment



Intellectual property and copyright

Ethics and quality

Code of Professional Conduct for the Information Consultant

Chapter 5 checklist

Chapter 6: Building trust and marketing your services


Understanding makes reputation and detects niches

Your ‘business attire’: creating and maintaining image

Professional visibility

Word-of-mouth: happy clients do marketing for you

Electronic promotional brochure

Chapter 6 checklist

Chapter 7: Client relations: the key to success


The request for proposal (RFP): to bid or not to bid?

Yes, I can help (informal inquiry)

Preliminary discussions: what, exactly, are you selling this time?

A preliminary memorandum

Determining budget scope

The formal proposal


Helping the client’s decision

Signature in hand: now the work begins

The art of the client relationship

Delivering the deliverables: report, presentation, discussion

Handling invoice issues

Wrap up … and setting up for the future

Chapter 8: Advice from other information consultants


‘Just one more clarification’: agreeing to deliverables vs delivering in advance

Keeping your integrity: what to do if you’re told what to do

Maintaining poise and neutrality while getting people to open up

Encountering concerns outside the official project scope

The unforeseen circumstances

Who said that? Protecting the trust client staff place in you

Losing objectivity or being seen as taking sides

Do you take the money and run when what the client requests disagrees with what you believe is needed?

Working with clients in the same industry

Can work be ‘recycled’?

Coping with the disappointment of burning the midnight oil … only to see the report collecting dust

You’re good, and don’t you forget it

Pass it on

Chapter 9: Take a leap from being a librarian to becoming an information consultant


Doing things differently

Assessing the demands for the information professional

Culture makes the difference

Expert practitioner ‘falls into’ consultancy

Ways of repositioning the librarian profession and schools

Chapter 9 checklist

Chapter 10: The clients speak: from a client’s perspective


The motivation to use an information consultant

How to find the right consultant

The ‘top five’ list of consultants’ qualities

Clients’ advice for future consultants

Chapter 11: Ahead

Appendix: Case studies




Information Consulting presents a closer look at what makes information consultants successful and how they develop a productive relationship with their clients. While most of the books on this subject area are providing the experiences of information consulting veterans on ‘how do you really do it?’, the aim of this book is focused on exploring the nature of information management consulting. This includes the task of the advice-and-guidance variety, such as helping clients to analyze and solve problems or to meet opportunities with the element of ‘What should I do?’. The authors have used their extensive international and professional networks to take the challenge of letting the clients speak about their experiences and expectations in hiring information consultants.

Key Features

  • Unique client perspective: managers and clients talk about their motivation, experiences and advice in the utilization of information consultants in recent case studies conducted by authors
  • Current information and guidance based on the authors’ wide-ranging practical experiences and empirical data (through interviews and questionnaires) collected from several countries
  • ‘top five’ list of consultants´ qualities is presented


Practitioners and students in LIS studies and MA programs at business schools, with reference to the new curricula of the academic institutions and the general business practices; Continuing Professional Education for various groups of professionals


No. of pages:
© Chandos Publishing 2011
5th October 2011
Chandos Publishing
eBook ISBN:
Paperback ISBN:


The authors have extensive backgrounds in information consulting and draw upon both their knowledge and experience in this work., The Australian Library Journal
I found the handbook to be a useful guide for and would recommend it to all potential information consultants., The Australian Library Journal

Ratings and Reviews

About the Authors

Irene Wormell

Irene Wormell is a Professor of Information Management in Denmark and Sweden. She has undertaken research and consultancy with a wide range of organizations globally and is part of an extensive international professional network. During 1982-2008 she acted also as consultant in her own company Informatiker Konsult AB in Sweden. Currently she is working in association with the Danish trend analytical bureau Firstmove A/S in Copenhagen.

Affiliations and Expertise

Independent Consultant, Sweden

Annie Olesen

Annie Joan Olesen, is a Director at A9 Consulting in Denmark and leader of the Ability Europe Ltd., Denmark Branch. She is an experienced consultant with a track record of high quality research and deliverables in national, international and EU engagements. With a focus on preparation, presentation and management of numerous international, national and regional projects with a particular strength of accessing a core network of experts having an excellent knowledge of the PSI market across the EU.

Affiliations and Expertise

Ability Europe Ltd and A9 Consulting ApS, Denmark

Gábor Mikulás

Gábor Mikulás is a Director at GM Consulting in Hungary. He has many years experience in working as information broker and consultant. Mikulás is President of the Association of Hungarian Information Brokers (MIBE) and Publisher of the KIT Hírlevél (Library - Information - Society Newsletter), a free weekly electronic paper for information and library professionals.

Affiliations and Expertise

GM Consulting, Hungary