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A monthly newsletter from the Rochester Professional Consultants Network.


As part of the Member Survey process, we offered a drawing to anyone who completed the survey and asked to opt-in to the drawing. Our first prize winner, a $50 gift certificate to Wegman’s is Michael Van der Gaag. The second prize, a $25 Wegman’s gift certificate, went to Bob Lurz. What a nice way to say thank you to two of RPCN’s most stalwart supporters.

For our 3rd prize, we made available some RPCN Coffee mugs and will be shipping those out in the next few days. Those winners were Melanie Watson, Terry Callanan, Mark Fling, Tina Rohring, Barbara Ingrassia, and Michael Roach. We appreciate that these people took the time to share their RPCN experiences and their recruiting ideas to help RPCN look forward to many more years serving the consulting community.

We also thank everyone that participated in this survey. Our final number was 31 respondents from 62 members. A 50% member involvement is a fantastic ratio for this type of survey. Again, we thank you all.

Look for the findings, trends, and patterns that were uncovered in next month’s newsletter.

In the meantime, the survey team will begin work on a survey of former members to learn more about the support needs of consultants, experts, and professionals.

Tom Fecteau, RPCN Membership Chair

Boost Your Marketing Power 
(With the “Three R’s)


Choosing a Consultant

How do prospective clients choose a consultant? Along with fees, etc., three major factors can drive their decision: Reputation, Recommendations, and Relationships (“The Three R’s”). Here are some tips for using these effectively in your marketing methods and media to become a prospect’s first choice.

Reputation: The First “R”
(Goals: Build credibility and become a recognized expert in your field)

  • Write: Articles, Papers, Books, Blogs, Newsletters
  • Cite: Accomplishments, Awards, Degrees, Patents
  • Promote: Posts, Press Releases, Exhibits at Conferences & Trade Shows
  • Showcase Your Talent: Speak, Train, Volunteer

I’ve acquired many coaching clients from my presentations and workshops at Consulting Business Boot Camps.

Recommendations: The Second “R”
(Goals: Build Trust, Credibility, and Connections).

   Ask people who know your work for:

  • Testimonials: How satisfied they are with the work you’ve done for them.
  • Endorsements: That you are a good candidate for someone to engage you. (They put their reputation on the line for you)
  • Referrals: (door openers). They connect you to people who might need your services.

   Have them cite:

  • Skills & Abilities they’ve observed.
  • Major Results you’ve achieved.
  • SAR(s): Situation, Action, Result (What you did to improve a situation).

Don’t be afraid to ask. I asked a client (executive director of a well-known nonprofit), who else she knew who might need my services. She sent me a letter with five solid referrals, including name, organization, and contact info. She said to tell them she recommended me.

Relationships: The Third “R”
(Goals: Build Trust, Bonding, Friendship)

Prospects like to choose consultants they know and trust (sometimes at higher fees than someone they don’t know as well). Networking in-person or virtually at events starts relationships. Connecting on LinkedIn or other social media also helps. Following up with attendees after you’ve given a presentation or workshop adds a personal touch. Volunteering in a professional or charitable organization can put you working side-by-side with potential clients (or connectors to them). They get to know you on a more personal level, and you might become friends.

Relationship tips:

  • Proactive Networking: Start a conversation with a person who is alone at an event. Connect other people you think should know each other. Connect without expectation of personal gain.
  • Sincerity: Ask questions and listen actively. Show genuine interest. Don’t use a script.
  • Find Common Interests: (Sports, Hobbies, Music, etc.)
  • Volunteer: Showcase your talent when you volunteer. Bonus: you build relationships while contributing to the success of a good cause.

I’ve facilitated strategic planning pro-bono as a member of nonprofit boards and acquired paid strategy consulting as a direct result. Trust built while volunteering was a major factor in clients’ choosing me.

Okay, step out of your comfort zone: Boost Your Marketing Power with the Three R’s.

Bob Lurz

Enhancing Human Capital
Lunch & Learn Updates

Last Month's Lunch-n-Learn

In July’s EHC Lunch-n-Learn we did a deep dive into “Managing Change.” We took a look at the psychology of change and discussed four phases that people go through when faced with change. We broke down what each phase looks like, and ways to deal with them. The group engaged in an open discussion with examples, questions, and solutions that have worked for them in the past.

The object of Managing Change is not to eliminate any of the phases, rather to minimize the time it takes to get through them”. In the end, the group had a better understanding of how to identify and help employees transition through to accepting change.

The session was led by Devin K. Floyd, a Past President of the Board of Directors for RPCN and President of NYOCON.

Upcoming Lunch-n-Learn:
Using Covey’s Habits of Public Victory (Habits 4-6) to Build Trust
– August 18, 2022

Please join us for the next installment of RPCN’s EHC virtual Lunch –n- Learn on Thursday, August 18 at 11:30 AM via Zoom, when we will discuss Using Covey’s Habits of Public Victory (Habits 4-6) to Build Trust.  Subtitle - Covey's 2nd three Habits in Action.  We all know that trust is critical in well-functioning teams (whether the teams be internal within a single company or external including clients, suppliers, and partners) and we will discuss how tools presented in Stephen R. Covey’s “7 Habits of Highly Effective People” can be used to help us build trust.

RPCN’s Enhancing Human Capital Lunch-n-Learns are held via Zoom on the third Thursday of every month. Our program starts and 11:30 a.m. ET and runs until 1:00 p.m. ET. o get more information about EHC, please contact the EHC team.

Using a Password Manager (Successfully)

We all struggle with passwords. We use the same ones on multiple sites (and we shouldn’t), we use easily-guessable words, dates, etc. (and those are vulnerable), we forget them (who doesn’t?), and we are generally unhappy about how hard websites are making it to access our accounts (2-factor authentication, password change requirements, having to type them over and over). Many people keep their passwords in Word documents on their computer (yikes!).

The reality is that most websites are stepping up their requirements for passwords because of rampant identity theft and fraud, so password management is a lot more complex than it used to be.

Many of us are turning to password managers like KeePass, LastPass, Norton Password Manager, NordPass, Dashlane, and myriad other technology solutions. Using one of these is a GREAT idea, but you do need to use these solutions wisely. Here are a few tips for success when using password manager apps:

  • Make sure that you have access to the app/program on MULTIPLE DEVICES. If you can only access your password manager on your phone, when (not if) you lose access to your phone, you lose access to all of your passwords
  • Make sure that someone besides you knows you are using the password manager AND they know your master password. If something happens to you, your loved ones will be glad they can access your accounts on your behalf
  • Make SURE that your master password is complex
  • Make sure that you ALWAYS are required to enter your master password when opening your password manager
  • Think through the process for resetting key passwords like your email, iCloud (Apple ID) account, bank accounts, etc. Many times, people have setup only minimal “associations” like their cell phone or their main email address. See if you can have multiple ways to receive codes, etc. when resetting your password on that account. Best advice – PRACTICE resetting your passwords on your accounts so that you know the limitations of how you could receive a code if your password manager is inaccessible, or if your password changed and you don’t know it.

Password managers can be a key component of keeping your identity and finances safe, and like anything of value, using these solutions responsibly is required.

David Finger, Computer Gardener

Simon Vision Consulting Program Update

As most of you know, the Rochester Professional Consultants Network (RPCN) has been providing the University of Rochester’s Simon School of Business (Simon) Simon Vision Consulting Program (Simon Vision) Mentors to help with their student teams for the past nine semesters.   We are now getting ready to start our tenth semester of providing mentors to the program.

Due to incredible student demand to participate in this entirely voluntary program, we are expecting Simon Vision to provide consultant teams to work on TWENTY different projects.  And, if there are 20 projects, we are hoping to have twenty RPCN member mentors available to the teams.

Being a mentor is a lot of fun with not too much of a time commitment.  We’re fortunate enough to have the new president of Simon Vision, Vardan Sharma, present an overview of the program, what sort of clients they tend to help, and how the mentors help the teams.  That overview will be presented at the August 12 Learn from the Best RPCN Friday Zoom Meeting.  Come and join the meeting to learn about mentoring or ask me about it.  I’d love to get you up to speed on the program and how mentors are aligned with a consulting team, with the only requirement for being a mentor is that you are an RPCN member.  Thanks to the wonder of tools like Zoom and Teams, you don’t even need to be in Rochester to help, although if you are local I’d expect you and your team will gain more from the mentoring experience if you do meet in person.  For the fall semester, the program will run from September through early December with the project teams actually getting turned loose on their client projects in early October.

If you are interested in having a Simon Vision Consulting Project Team perform work for you, or would simply like more information about the program, (or even if you’d like to volunteer to be an RPCN member mentor to a student team) please contact me, Dave Bassett at

RPCN Video

Watch the introductory video here.

Upcoming RPCN Events

Visit the RPCN website for a list of all upcoming events.

Technical Forum
Friday, August 5, 2022
8:00 - 9:30 a.m. 

Simon Vision Consulting: A Mentoring Opportunity
Presented by Vardan Sharma
Friday, August 12, 2022
8:00 - 9:30 a.m.

Business Forum
Friday, August 19, 2022
8:00 - 9:30 a.m. 

RPCN Board Meeting
Everyone is welcome to attend.
Friday, August 19, 2022
10:00 - 11:30 a.m. 

Enhancing Human Capital Lunch N' Learn: Using Covey’s Habits of Public Victory (Habits 4-6) to Build Trust
Thursday, August 18, 2022
11:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Learn From the Best: TBD
Friday, August 26, 2022
8:00 - 9:30 a.m.

Did You Know? 
Changing the Guard

Did you know that RPCN’s fiscal year runs from July 1 – June 30 every year? This means that on July 1, 2022, a number of changes occurred in the leadership of our organization.

Why? It’s because RPCN is a vibrant, dynamic organization and does not run by itself. There is a tremendous amount of activity “behind the scenes” by volunteers who do what they say they are going to do. The result is an organization that has many meaningful presentations, Business and Technical Forums, workshops, social events, and more. All of this requires planning, organization, and dedication.

To accomplish this, RPCN has a President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and several members who are on the Board of Directors. Effective July 1, 2022, RPCN has a new President and VP. There have also been changes to the Board.. See for yourself by clicking Board of Directors.

There are also several committees, all with managers and committee members. Each committee has a specific purpose and is there to do the work that it takes for RPCN to function smoothly. Committees make it happen, are interesting, are a great way to get to know other RPCN members, and can be FUN. To learn more about the committee managers, click on the blue link under their pictures and it will take you to their Profile page.

All members are encouraged to join a committee of their choice. The committees and their Managers are listed on the July 1, 2022, updated RPCN Committees page. 

The RPCN website contains a wealth of information. Current leadership and committee information are only part of it.

Steve Royal

Member News

RPCN Member honored by the DOD

RPCN member Joyce Curran was presented with a national award at a luncheon held Friday, June 24, for her many years of service to the Department of Defense (DOD).

Presenting the award was Rear Admiral Ten Eyck Powell, currently serving as NYS Chair of Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR).

The inscription reads, “This recognition reflects deep gratitude and appreciation for the years of dedicated service you have so willingly and selflessly given the Nation – and to the men and women in the National Guard and Reserve who serve to protect it.”

Joyce has served in numerous capacities for the DOD over 30 years and is currently the New York State Director of Public Affairs of ESGR.

Request from the Editors

When submitting material to be included in the RPCN newsletter, please:
1. Send the submission TO and not to individuals.
2. Include the words “For RPCN Newsletter” in the subject line. (Some people send articles to ALL RPCN members themselves, and it is often difficult to distinguish those that are being circulated independently from those intended for inclusion in the newsletter.)

Membership Information

Not an RPCN member? You can join RPCN now to receive great benefits, including free admission to RPCN presentations, a listing in the RPCN Member Directory, and discounts to RPCN events. Click here for more information on joining RPCN.

New members:
Michelle Clark

We want your news!

The RPCN newsletter welcomes news, success stories, tips, resources, events and other items that would be of broad interest to consultants. Submit a newsletter item to for inclusion. 

Melanie Watson, Publisher 
Diana Robinson, Copyeditor

The deadline for submitting material for our next newsletter is the 21st of this month.



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