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Developing Knowledge-Based Client Relationships: The Future of Professional Services (Knowledge Reader) Paperback – January 3, 2000

10 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0750671859 ISBN-10: 0750671858

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Ross Dawson has done a brilliant job of examining how all businesses (not just professional services, though that is where he focuses) can build knowledge-based relationships to create new, immensely lucrative ways of doing business." - Thomas A. Stewart, Author of Intellectual Capital

"At last! A book that talks about the practical challenges and difficulties we all face in applying knowledge management principles in a professional services environment. This book should be required reading, not only for professional services knowledge workers, but also for aspiring content dot-com entrepreneurs." - John G. Peetz, Chief Knowledge Officer, Ernst & Young LLP

"A much-needed guidebook for all who seek to add value through knowledge, and get paid for doing it." - Keith Reinhard, Chairman/CEO, DDB Worldwide Communications Group

"Ross Dawson's book offers a meticulous analysis of all key drivers which define successful business relationships. Highly topical, Developing Knowledge-Based Client Relationships is a must read for all whose survival hinges on their ability to successfully convert transaction-based interactions into comprehensive long-term partnerships with their clients." - Marcel Kreis, Managing Director, UBS Singapore

"It is an essential read for managers in all organizations, and I'd particularly recommend managers of internal service departments to study its ideas carefully." - Dr. Karl-Erik Sveiby, Author of The New Organizational Wealth

About the Author

B.Sc. (Hons.) in Physics, Bristol University, U.K., Managing Director of Advanced Human Technologies: a consulting firm specialising in developing the information and knowledge skills and capabilities of investment banks and knowledge organizations

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Product Details

  • Series: Knowledge Reader
  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Butterworth-Heinemann (January 3, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0750671858
  • ISBN-13: 978-0750671859
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.9 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,491,763 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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44 of 48 people found the following review helpful By Bill Godfrey on June 8, 2000
Format: Paperback
Although written for and about professional services, the analysis and prescriptions in this book apply to any organisation that is concerned with building value-adding relationships with its clients. That is almost every business except one that is purely in commodities.
It is a first class book: well argued, well written and structured, clear and easy to reference and use. It succeeds admirably as a practitioner's manual. Prior understanding of the field is not essential, while established practitioners will find much to learn.
Knowledge is defined as 'the capacity to act effectively' and 'knowledge management' as referring to the dynamic processes associated with recognising knowledge as a primary asset and attempting to make it more productive. An important consequence of the definition is that knowledge is held only by people. The core of knowledge management initiatives lies in building and developing relationships between people, and knowledge transfer occurs between people. The key to effective knowledge transfer is therefore intimacy and trust.
He argues that knowledge, how it is generated, used and transferred, is probably the key source of differentiation in a world that is heading rapidly to commoditisation. Adding value to clients through knowledge transfer "can only be done with a highly interactive approach that draws on and develops relationships."
There is a detailed discussion of the role of information and the critical importance of understanding how to add the greatest value to information so that it can become can become valuable knowledge for clients.
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43 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Robert David STEELE Vivas HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on March 19, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A great deal of work went into conceptualizing and crafting this book, and I give very high marks to the author, who does a really superb job of integrating insights from knowledge management, information technology, cognitive modeling, and client relationship or account management. This book makes the jump from airplane reading, to "hold and read several times more."
At the heart of the book, and many appear to miss this on the first reading, is the author's distinction between commoditized information services and differentiated information services. The first, aided by automation, is on a downward spiral in terms of both value and pricing, and competition is fierce. The second, partially aided by automation but ultimately being unique for rising to a higher level of knowledge service delivery that can only be done by expert humans, is where value pricing and differentiation can be found, and where professional services need to go if they are to remain profitable.
The second urgent and valuable insight the author shares with us is the co-evolutionary nature of a service that evolves through constant knowledge transfer to the client and constant co-creation of new knowledge as the competitive advantage; and a very deep and broad relationship with the client at all levels of both organizations. One leads to the other, the other leads to finding new business with the same client, and the cycle repeats itself. This insight is especially relevant to all those who are using information technology to force single human account managers to handle more and more accounts remotely, all the while "losing touch" with their clients for lack of time to make the personal visit or personal telephone call.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Michael Ross on April 22, 2000
Format: Paperback
Dawson hits it right on the head. His no nonsense approach allows the reader to dig into the subject of managing client relationships in the new economy better than anyone else I've read.
I found the beginning a bit slow, but only because it explains the context for readers of all experience. I highly recommend pushing through the introductory chapters as quickly as possible because the meat of the book is excellent and exciting, particularly the discussion on linguistics. (And, I'm not a big fan of linguistics!)
Michael Ross EVP Capital Markets Thomson Financial Boston, MA
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Linda Zarate on September 11, 2001
Format: Paperback
As a consultant who lives from one engagement to the next one of the buzzwords as projects are wrapped up is "knowledge transfer". It is almost like an afterthought and triggers some frantic activity to throw together a last minute plan, get the client's staff to absorb an array of information in a compressed timeframe, and sign off. This book changes that approach for me, and does so in a big way.
After reading the proactive approach to planned knowledge transfer, which needs to be a part of the initial project plan, I would consider the approach I cited above to not only be unprofessional, but borders on malpractice.
This book treats knowledge as a valuable commodity (something the business development types certainly preach, but the engagement team misses), and provides a methodical approach to using knowledge as a the product. Given the fact that we consultants are selling that very thing (knowledge) in a perfect world there should be no need for this book. Unfortunately, this book is sorely needed, and should be required reading for every consultant, regardless of whether he or she is a independent or member of one of the "Big 5".
Rarely do I read a book than makes a dramatic impact on my thinking, or fills me with resolve to immediately assimilate and use the content - this one does. I think it is an important work that is well written and gives a strong foundation for ethical practices and professionalism.
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