Consulting, training, and coaching to help you solve messy problems that disrupt your operations or cause customers to take their business elsewhere.
Consultant, coach, teacher and writer, Jeanne Sawyer specializes in solving messy, expensive, chronic problems—the kind that cause customers to make angry phone calls to executives or even to take their business elsewhere. Her pragmatic approach demonstrates measurable results. As a consultant and coach, Jeanne has saved her clients millions of dollars and kept them off the front pages by
- leading them through problem solving projects on particularly complicated problems,
- helping them incorporate systematic methods into their business processes, and
- helping them build partnerships that get past the marketing jargon and really work.
She has published a number of articles using some of those examples to explain specific aspects of problem solving.
However, everyone needs to have effective problem solving skills, so she developed a series of workshops and seminars to teach her methods to others. Her book, When Stuff Happens: A Practical Guide to Solving Problems Permanently, provides guidance for those who can't attend a workshop.
Jeanne is also a part-time lecturer in the MIS department of the San Jose State University College of Business.
Jeanne developed her techniques by combining what she learned from the formal disciplines of computer science and quality with the trial-and-error experience of solving real problems. She holds a Ph.D. and M.S. in computer science and an M.S. in Library Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Her bachelor's degree in Chemistry is from Duke University. Jeanne has assisted a variety of companies and associations, large and small, including the following:
Allied Telesyn International
American Society for Quality (ASQ)
Association of College and University Telecommunication Administrators (ACUTA)
Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI)
Computer Curriculum Corporation
International Tandem Users Group (ITUG)
The Meyer Group
Mid-Peninsula Housing Coalition
Share (IBM users group)
Small Business Technology Institute
Sustainable San Mateo County
Triangle Research Libraries Network (Duke University, North Carolina State University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)
University of California Extension, Santa Cruz
Examples of accomplishments for these organizations include:
Problem-Solving and Root Cause Analysis
Saved a major account ($10M/year) for a computer company by determining that lack of operations procedures, not equipment failures, were causing system outages. Transformed the relationship from adversarial to effective working partnership.
Saved a strategic account for a telecommunications company by demonstrating that Automated Teller Machines were failing because the initial installations were incorrectly wired. The process involved ten separate companies.
Identified key causes of system outages included software robustness, a faulty operations process, and an inadequate problem management process for a document-imaging software company and a key customer.
"Crisis avoidance project" identified inadequate change management procedures and inadequate installation procedures as the root causes for ongoing system instability for a telephone company, software company and computer manufacturer. Success meant the software company and computer manufacturer gained an excellent reference account for a new product while the telephone company avoided being national front-page news, removed a significant barrier to getting a rate hike approved, and the executives involved in choosing the new system got to keep their jobs.
Business Process Analysis and Design
Analyzed how customers interacted with a software company as part of an effort to make it easier for customers to do business with them.
Identified short and long-term improvement opportunities in the Order—>Build—>Ship—>Install process for a telecommunications company.
Identified short and long-term improvement opportunities in the Accounts Payable Process for a non-profit organization managing >80 affordable housing properties in the Bay area.
Mapped “as is” and designed “should be” key business processes in preparation for implementing a new customer relationship management system for a software company. Advised the company on implementation and configuration issues to assure the new system and processes matched.
Developed an effective lead management process for a telecommunications company.
Building and Managing Strategic Partnerships
Led a computer company to transform its relationships with key customers from adversarial to effective working partnerships. Standardized the approach as corporate best practice. Bottom line effect: $37M cost savings and increased revenue in the first 1.5 years.
Standardized an account management process for a telecommunications company to build effective strategic partnerships with key accounts.
Guided a telecommunications company to build a working partnership with a telemarketing company and an event management company. The purpose of the partnership was to identify qualified leads for the telecommunications company by sponsoring special seminars.
Solving Problems PermanentlySM
The Sawyer Partnership. All rights reserved.
Jeanne Sawyer, Ph.D.