I’ve always argued against communications training consultants who blow their own horn by announcing new clients and telling the world who they work for.
Since opening my consultancy in 1997, I’ve never released a client list. Has it hurt my business development efforts? Probably. But that is not priority number one. At the risk of sounding too pious, it’s the client’s outcome that’s important, not a consultant’s “Hey, look at me” public profile and burning desire to squeeze out every last penny from every client.
Media training, public speaking, and (especially) Congressional testimony preparation workshops often cover issues that are best left unaired in public. This is sensitive stuff. Initiatives may deal with confidential public policy matters, proprietary competitive information, legal cases, personnel issues, or a host of other delicate questions. If I were to go blabbing about my clients’ behind-the-scenes preparations, doesn’t it stand to reason that there is risk to the client? Sorry, but ethical standards don’t allow for such behavior.
Naturally, the choice is yours when seeking out your next communications training consultant. One piece of advice: Among the questions you pose, be sure to ask whether they release a client list or if they respect client confidentiality. The response could make a big difference to you and your organization in the end.
Anyone out there been burned by a lack of confidentiality?