Frequently Asked Presentation Questions
Being a consultant allows Ann of Delehant & Associates to be an ongoing advocate for quality professional learning. Being successful as an educational consultant depends on developing relationships that nurture and support her partners and clients, while allowing her to do her best work. To this end, Ann ensures a collaborative environment for learning in each place she works. She begins using techniques for “contracting” by defining the needs and goals, clarifying roles, relationship, and desired outcomes with every client. All of the work is custom designed in collaboration with the client. She starts with the same questions:
|What are your needs? What do you hope to accomplish?
Ann is committed to aligning the work that she supports with system goals. By clearly defining the needs and by examining the data that drives the request, the partners will ensure that they work is aligned.
|How will we define success?
It is important to begin, as Stephen Covey taught us, with the end in mind. Ann is committed to the achievement of the desired outcomes and will work with you to define success measures.
|What are the desired outcomes?
First, she determines if she is the right person for the work. She has no qualms saying someone else could better meet a client's needs. If she is right for the job, then Ann clarifies what she will provide and what you, the client, will provide. This defines the purpose and non-purpose for the work.
|How is this initiative aligned with the systemic strategy?
Ann wants to understand the district's priorities. If the district has not built the connections, this dialogue is an opportunity to find the connections and the logic of the priorities. She will help partners think about ways to integrate the work both vertically and horizontally and will always look for ways to support change and sustainability.
|What are the processes for meeting the goals?
Together, you discuss pre-work, available time, activities, follow-up opportunities and assignments, and assessment strategies. Most people want to accomplish more than is reasonable in the available time so negotiation is needed to focus the work. Ann prefers meeting or interviewing some or all of the participants to develop a focused, realistic, and productive plan.
|What is the plan for follow up and continuing support?
We have learned from the research of Bruce Joyce and Beverly Showers that “events” have limited impact. Ann will work with her partners to ensure that there is a plan for support, ongoing work and assessing the impact of the work to ensure sustainability.
|What are the agreements about dates of service, payment, final reports, materials, materials development, and next steps?
Ann ensures that you agree on expectations and conditions before beginning. Most of these agreements are verbal but some clients follow up with written contracts. Together the partners will formalize the business agreement and Ann follows up by sending objectives, agendas, and materials for review/revision and approval.
|Who will participate (audience, team members)?
Once conditions are established, Ann collects information about the group: how do they work together, what are they excited about, who's active, who's passive, and where they get stuck. Some "red flags" include last-minute planning and teams that believe events will influence progress in spite of what they know about change.
|What can internal and external consultants do to support learning about professional development?
Ann shares ideas, materials, and information freely. If something works or if she has developed a helpful template or graphic organizer, then she offers it as a draft and invites clients to edit her work to meet local needs.
Where does Ann Deleant work?
Ann Delehant has worked with several educational organizations throughout the United States. Over the years Ann has worked in almost all 50 states.
In the northeast part of the U.S., closest to her New York home, she has worked with several education institutes in Maine, Rhode Island, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland.
In the mid-Atlantic and southeast areas of U.S., areas include Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, and Florida.
Ann spends much of time in the mid-west helping in the states of Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Arkansas, Kentucky, Tennessee, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Kansas, Texas, Colorado, Nebraska, Wyoming, Utah, South Dakota and Wisconsin.
On the west coast of the U.S. Ann has worked with select institutes in Washington, California, Arizona, and Alaska.