Consider the following example: the Acme Company enlists a consultant to identify qualified external resources to supply a hair removal product that it could sell under its brand name. Availability of this product for market launch under aggressive timing is also a key constraint.
Acme is very specific regarding the desired product features and benefits, market performance benchmarks and program timing considerations. What should be reasonable expectations for the deliverables?
The answer is: whatever the client and consultant explicitly define and agree upon. The two parties may or may not share the same view of what constitutes "reasonable", and thus can spawn disagreement. The two parties should work to ensure mutual agreement to the engagement success factors, including the circumstances under which the engagement should be considered successful. They should then incorporate this language into the agreement and apply it to judge the quality and substance of the deliverables. This should help reduce the potential for ambiguity.
What are your thoughts?
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