Time and Money: Our Consulting Philosophy

Primary objectives and Considerations Regarding Fees

  • Every consulting relationship must be equally fair to client and consultant.  
  • Although the work performed may be complex, a compensation arrangement should not be.
  • The client must always be kept up-to-date. A former client, J.B. Summer of the Norpac Food Co-op, Stayton, Oregon, once told us, "Just remember, in business, there’s no such thing as a good surprise."
  • It's important that every detail in the consultant-client relationship be open to discussion. How frank are we?  Well, for a representative discussion, when you finish this short article, see The Very High Cost of Low Flat Fees.

The work we do is varied. The factors we take into consideration when framing the relationship and the compensation include (but are not limited to):

  • The estimated time the project will take [total number of hours or days expended]
  • The estimated duration of the project [Start - stop dates]
  • The amount of travel time
  • The number of people, different skillsets, different locations involved in the project

Two Types of Consulting Work

Teleconvergence is retained on either a Project or a Retainer basis.


Most consulting work for all consultants consists of projects, specific activities that have start and stop dates. For some consultants, that's the only work they do.

Teleconvergence works with clients to make projects as manageable as possible. For a new client, this may mean a limited number of initial hours spent largely in defining the scope and cost of the project and in establishing the basis for a long-term relationship. We also spend time creating milestones and deliverables, learning about the client's business and objectives, and determining the activities with the greatest financial ROI or the most strategic value, or some combination thereof.


Since Teleconvergence is a management consulting firm, we also have clients on retainer. A Teleconvergence retainer may consist of multiple overlapping projects stretching into the future. It may reflect outsourced functions such as IT-Liaison or telecom management. It may involve a continuing management role ensuring that technology is adequate to support marketing efforts and that marketing efforts take full advantage of available technology. It may consist of any or all of these and more.

Retainers are always for extended periods and are paid monthly at a flat rate that reflects either stable volume or changing volumes of work averaged out over the retainer period. If a retainer client unexpectedly has a large project, we either roll it into an extended retainer or bill hourly for the extra work at the discounted retainer rate, as the client prefers.

For more information about our retainer, see The Telecom Retainer FAQ.  


Regardless of the type of relationship, Teleconvergence tries to fit the scope of the activity to the client's time, financial, and strategic horizons. We have a variety of compensation plans and we always try to propose more than one of them to a prospective client in a way that is revenue neutral for us. That allows us to simply suggest that the client select the compensation method with which he or she feels most comfortable.