Our Blog Excerpts Savings Contact


Dorset House Publishing
High-Quality Books on Software Engineering and Management.  Since 1984.
dorsethouse.com > titles


iDH Sign-Up

Get Our e-News
Delivered by FeedBurner

Contents of

The Secrets of Consulting:
Giving and Getting Advice Successfully

by Gerald M. Weinberg
foreword by Virginia Satir

ISBN: 978-0-932633-01-9  
©1985  248 pages   softcover  
$29.95 (plus shipping)

Subject(s): Computer Consulting

*For UPS Ground within U.S. only.
For more info., or for Int.'l or rush orders, click here.

Rate this


1. Why Consulting Is So Tough

Sherby's Laws of Consulting

There's Always a Problem
The Ten Percent Promise
The Ten Percent Solution
It's Always a People Problem
Marvin's Law
Never Forget They're Paying You by the Hour
The Credit Rule
The Lone Ranger Fantasy
The Fourth Law of Consulting

The Law of Raspberry Jam
Weinberg's Law of Twins
Rudy's Rutabaga Rule

After Rutabagas, Then What?

The Hard Laws of Consulting

The Hard Law
The Harder Law
The Hardest Law

2. Cultivating a Paradoxical Frame of Mind

Why Paradox?
Optimitis and The Tradeoff Treatment

Tradeoff Charts
The Tradeoff Treatment

Time Tradeoffs

Now Versus Later
Fisher's Fundamental Theorem
Risk Versus Certainty
The Third-Time Charm

The Orange Juice Test

3. Being Effective When You Don't Know What You're Doing

The Problem with Specialists

The Elephant in the Boardroom
Out of Your Depth

Marvin's Medical Secrets

The First Great Secret
The Second Great Secret
The Third Great Secret
The Fourth Great Secret
The Fifth Great Secret
The Sixth Great Secret

Featuring Failure

The Bolden Rule
The Bolden Rule In Consulting
Featuring Your Own Failures

Faking Success

The Gilded Rule
The Inverse Gilded Rule
The Gilded Consultant

4. Seeing What's There

The Law of the Hammer

Inventing a Tool to Improve Vision

The Study of History

A Long, Yeasty Story
The White Bread Warning
Bouilding's Backward Basis
Spark's Law of Problem Solution
Study Guides

The Why Whammy

How to Dress a Consultant
The Endless Supply of Reasons

Seeing Beyond the Conspicuous

The Bigness is Not the Horse
The Label Law
Maintenance Versus Design
The Misdirection Method
The Three-Finger Rule

The Five-Minute Rule

5. Seeing What's Not There

Missing Tools
Reasoning from What Isn't There

The Level Law
The Missing Solution
The Missing History
The Missing Request for Help

How to See What Isn't There

Be Aware of Your Own Limitations
Use Other People
Investigate Other Cultures
Use Laundry Lists
Check the Process

On Being Ridiculous

Why I Stopped Being a Professor
Weinberg's Law of Fetch
The Rule of Three

Loosening Up Your Thinking

Look for Analogies
Move to Extremes
Look Outside the Boundary
Look for alibis Versus Explanations
The Emotional Component
The Incongruence Insight

Brown's Brilliant Bequest

6. Avoiding Traps

Staying Out of Trouble
Laws, Rules, and Edicts

A Mysterious Christmas Gift
The Main Maxim

The Art of Setting Triggers

The Potato Chip Principle
The Titanic Effect
Triggering on Natural Events

Building Your Own Bell System

Attached Notes
Tally cards
Physical Devices
Other People
Mutual Trigger Pacts

Using Your Unconscious Mind

The Songmeister
Limits to the Unconscious
Watching the Inside of Your Head

7. Amplifying Your Impact

The Consultant's Survival Kit
Keeping Ahead of Your Clients
Jiggling Stuck Systems

Getting Stuck
The Jiggler Role
Stuck by Overload
Stuck Communication
Opportunities to Jiggle
The Law of the Jiggle

Teaching the Blind

The Elephant
Changing Perceptions
The Hippopotamus
Changing Awareness
Seeing Internal Behavior
Seeing Feelings

The Powerful Consultant

8. Gaining Control of Change

Weinberg's Law Inverted
Prescott's Pickle Principle

Beating the Brine

The Forces of Change

Roamer's Rule
Homer's Rule
The Most Powerful Force for Change
Romer's Rule

Controlling Small Changes

A Change That Makes No Difference
The Fast-Food Fallacy
The Strong and Unrelenting Force
Ford's Fundamental Feedback Formula

The Weinberg Test

Measuring Effectiveness
Putting Your Money ...

9. How to Make Changes Safely

Pandora's Pox

My Pox
The New Law
Pandora, Archetype of Change
The Worst Affliction

Living with Failure

The Dealer's Choice
Accept Failure
Trade Improvement for Perfection
Apply the Rule of Three
Invent a Backup

Preventive Medicine

The Edsel Edict
Choosing Your Time and Place
The Volkswagen Verity
The Time Bomb

Rhonda's Revelations

Crisis and Illusion
The Struggle to Preserve
Illusions Only make it Worse

10. What to Do When They Resist

Appreciating Resistance
Getting the Resistance Out in the Open

Your reaction
Their Action

Naming the Resistance in a Neutral Way

Waiting for a Response
Dealing with Questions

Locating the Nature of the Resistance

A Buffalo Story
The Buffalo Bridle
A Dog Story
A People Story
Work Together to Discover the Source
Find and Test Alternative Approaches

Preventing Resistance

Reducing Uncertainty
Getting Out of the Way

11. Marketing Your Services

How Consultants Get Started
The Laws of Marketing

The Right Amount of Business
The Best Way to Get Clients
Exposure Time
How Important Are You?
Big Clients
Lynne's Law of Life

More Laws of Marketing

Satisfied Clients
Giving It Away
The Duncan Hines Difference
Doing Nothing Is Doing Something

Marketing for Quality

12. Putting a Price on Your Head

Sex and The First Law of Pricing
Image and The Second Law of Pricing
More Than Money: The Third Law of Pricing
Alternative Fees: The Fourth Law of Pricing
Need For Money and The Fifth Law of Pricing
Fee as Feedback: The Sixth Law of Pricing
Fees for Special Effects and The Seventh Law of Pricing
Negotiation and The Eighth Law of Pricing
The Principle of Least Regret: The Ninth Law of Pricing
Fee as Feeling: The Tenth Law of Pricing

13. How to Be Trusted

Image and The First Law of Trust

Price Versus Trust
The Value of Explanations

Fairness and The Second Law of Trust
Lost Trust and The Third Law
Tricks and The Fourth Law of Trust
Who's Lying? The Fifth Law of Trust
Protection and The Sixth Law of Trust
Honesty and The Seventh Law of Trust
Promises, Promises, and Two More Laws of Trust
Contracts and The Tenth Law of Trust
Trust and The Golden Rule

14. Getting People to Follow Your Advice

Lessons from the Farm

Readings and Other Experiences: Where to Go If You Want More

Effective Thinking
Working with People
Handling Resistance
The Family Model
Laboratory Training
The Consulting Trade
The Consulting Business
Personal Development

The Journal
Continuing Education

Listing of Laws, Rules, and Principles


Return to Book Page

Table of Contents
Foreword by Virginia Satir

Dorset House Catalog
This Book's Flyer

By this Author
An Introduction to General Systems Thinking: Silver Anniversary Edition
The Psychology of Computer Programming: Silver Anniversary Edition

Also Recommended
Five Core Metrics: The Intelligence Behind Successful Software Management, by Lawrence H. Putnam and Ware Myers
More Secrets of Consulting: The Consultant's Tool Kit, by Gerald M. Weinberg
Peopleware: Productive Projects and Teams, 2nd ed., by Tom DeMarco and Timothy Lister
Project Retrospectives: A Handbook for Team Reviews, by Norman L. Kerth

Waltzing with Bears: Managing Risk on Software Projects, by Tom DeMarco and Timothy Lister

How to Order

To order this book by credit card directly from Dorset House in New York, please call (800) 342-6657 or (212) 620-4053, weekdays, 9am to 6pm. Alternatively, print out our Faxable Order Form and fax to (212) 727-1044.

To order this book from an online bookstore, please see above.

To purchase at a bookstore, contact our Recommended Booksellers to verify availability. Any store can order from Dorset House using the book's title and ISBN number. Also, bookstores can order our books through Baker & Taylor.

We'd like to make it easy for you to order, so please contact us at any time for help!

New: 3143 Broadway, Suite 2B    New York, New York 10027    USA
1-800-DH-BOOKS or 212-620-4053, fax 212-727-1044
Copyright © 1996-2008 by Dorset House Publishing Co., Inc. All rights reserved.
Home | Blog | Savings | Stores | Features | Titles | Authors | Subjects | Orders | About | Contact | Legal