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The Trusted Advisor [Paperback]

David H. Maister , Charles H. Green , Robert M. Galford
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Oct. 9 2001
In today's fast-paced networked economy, professionals must work harder than ever to maintain and improve their business skills and knowledge. But technical mastery of one's discipline is not enough, assert world-renowned professional advisors David H. Maister, Charles H. Green, and Robert M. Galford. The key to professional success, they argue, is the ability to earn the trust and confidence of clients. To demonstrate the paramount importance of trust, the authors use anecdotes, experiences, and examples -- successes and mistakes, their own and others' -- to great effect. The result is an immensely readable book that will be welcomed by the inexperienced advisor and the most seasoned expert alike.

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The Trusted Advisor + Managing The Professional Service Firm + True Professionalism: The Courage to Care About Your People, Your Clients, and Your Career
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David Maister, Charles Green, and Robert Galford--consultants on professional-service management and customer-relation issues--believe nobody can become successful as a business guru until they first gain the confidence of their clients. In The Trusted Advisor, the authors effectively build their case through anecdote and illustration, then relay a solid series of relevant suggestions applicable to both would-be consultants and those already active in the field. Among their most potent suggestions is a practical, five-step development process that encourages outsiders to engage clients by focusing attention on the issues and individuals at hand; listening both to what they say and what they leave unsaid; framing the immediate problem from their perspective; envisioning with them how a solution might appear; and committing jointly to the actions and resources that will bring it about. Also particularly useful is the examination of trust-building during four phases of a client-advisor alliance: at the time the relationship is consummated; during the assignment; after the assignment; and when "cross-selling," or establishing affiliations with the customer's associates. Boosting its utility, the book is filled with concise, easily adopted tips like "return phone calls unbelievably fast" and "always tell the truth and not what the client wants to hear." --Howard Rothman --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


Carl Stern CEO, Boston Consulting Group An invaluable road map to all those who seek to develop truly special relationships with their clients.

Tom Peters author of The Professional Service 50 This is a brilliant -- and practical -- book. In our "world gone mad," trust is, paradoxically, more important than ever.

William F. Stasior senior chairman and former CEO, Booz-Allen & Hamilton This book is engaging, enjoyable, and absolutely on target. It is packed with truth. The Trusted Advisor will guide success not just in the advisory professions but in leadership and life as well.

Professor Charles Fombrun Leonard N. Stern School of Business, New York University The Trusted Advisor gets to the heart and soul of the advice business. This path-breaking book is a must-read.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
LET'S START WITH A QUESTION: What benefits would you obtain if your clients trusted you more? Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A book that fails to deliver Aug. 18 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book came highly recommended to me by a work colleague, so highly in fact that I bought a copy for myself and a second copy as a gift item. Sadly, after having read the book, I can't understand what he saw in it. This book is disappointing because it promises the world, then delivers very little beyond platitudes and common sense.

Some books do a great job teaching common sense because they convey information we "already knew" in a way that makes us see things differently, or that sticks in our head so that we actually implement common sense, instead of saying "I knew" that and continuing old patterns of behaviour. "How to Win Friends and Influence People" is a great example of a book that teaches common sense in a way that will actually change how you act and how you think. By contrast, this book tells you things you already know in uninsightful and uninspiring ways.

An example of how the book fails to deliver is the chapter on cross selling. This is a very important issue for many professionals, and something is specific enough that an author should be able to give lots of practical, useful advice. Instead, the chapter is a only dozen pages long, and almost all of it is taken up with a discussion of how hard cross-selling is. I know this already, and even if I didn't, telling me it's hard doesn't help me do anything about it or improve my practice. The chapter closes with 1-2 paragraphs referring the reader to their general system of trust-building. That's not useful advice, it's specific, and it's not actionable. If you write a chapter on cross-selling, I expect you to tell me how to cross-sell. Not that I should have already figured it out from the rest of the book.

Speaking of their general system of trust-building...
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Maister is the Master July 27 2001
My introduction to David Maister came from the former managing director of Burson-Marteller's Tokyo office, who recommended True Professionalism. That book became one of the "required readings" for my training company's staff. Since True Professionalism, I've read Managing the Professional Service Firm and found it heavy, over-detail-oriented and difficult to apply. Now comes The Trusted Advisor (with other authors) and I can say without a doubt this best book on trust development I've read--putting real meat in those abstract concepts like "credibility." His chapter where he introduces the equation where Trust = Credibility + Reliability + Intimacy, all divided by Self-orientation, would be worth the price of the book. No, there probably is nothing new under the sun, but Maister in this book (and in Practice What You Preach, another gem) provides the keys to create better results for clients, and shows us how to turn those keys to start the engine. If there were 10 stars to give, I'd rate this a 10.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For Your Arsenal Jan. 10 2002
Whether you are in sales, are an attorney, or providing any kind service or intangible, this is a great book. If you think you've read all the client oriented, consulting oriented "sales and success" books - but haven't read this ... then you are never going to be at the top of your field. This book is about bringing real authenticity to the relationships with your clients. Client executives can smell a sneak or a fraud a mile away. Today, business is more competitive than ever, making losing a client relationship a crime. Knowing how to keep a client, build a relationship and continue nuturing it, is an art. Maister points to great examples and gets you to thinking ... "if only I'd done that ..." or "next time I'll ...". This is a thinking persons book, one to be reviewed over again through the course of your career, but only if you want to be among the "trusted few" with seasoned, senior executives. Other great books along this line I recommend are: any of Maisters books, Patrick McKenna's material (see their web pages too), and Clients for Life by Andrew Sobel.
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5.0 out of 5 stars More than an Advisor Jan. 11 2003
An experienced colleague recommended this book to me at a conference. The title simply does not do this book justice but I bought it anyway. If you ever wondered how some consultants and professionals do such a good job obtaining and keeping clients, then READ THIS BOOK.
I have recommended this book to all my clients and they agree. More importantly, very few so-called "advisors" do what this book explains clearly. Tremendous resource for any professional but many very powerful techniques to help you close contracts without sounding like a used car salesman. The case studies and examples hit home and force you to stop and think about your own style.
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4.0 out of 5 stars An easy to understand look at difficult topic. July 8 2001
Here is a good book, that clearly and accurately describes how to master a difficult skill. As an IT consultant I found this book to be immediately helpful in furthering my consulting skills.
This book takes the reader through the entire process of moving from "Subject Matter Expert" to Trusted Advisor. It accurately describes the benefits of this role for any professional rendering services. This might help one to justify training in this area to one's superiors.
I was continually impressed with the how the book dealt with the topic of honesty. Clearly we all strive to be trustworthy, however when that alone is the goal one might be prone to dishonesty to create an illusion for the client to trust. I felt this book gave real guidance on how to proceed, without having to walk a fine line.
I find this book to be of most value to an experienced professional/consultant, looking to hone an skill. It is of less value (but certainly some value) to new-comer to these types of skills. A better book for a new-comer would be "Managing the Professional Services Firm" by David Maister. That said, this book is worth much more than ~[price], buy it.
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Most recent customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent condition
Book is in excellent condition as promised.The book was delivered just in time to meet the promised delivery time frame. Overall, I am satisfied with the transaction.
Published on Oct. 15 2011 by Thanku
5.0 out of 5 stars The Trusted Advisor
The book arrived in a brand new condition and as per my expectation. It is a very good book for those who are considering consulting as their career path.
Published on Oct. 16 2010 by Parth
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't waiste your money
I found this book too broad, although it gives some examples, and tries to use some formulas to figure out how much your client trust you, nothing scientificly proven. Read more
Published on Oct. 5 2003 by Fodil Laoudi
5.0 out of 5 stars Not Only for Consultants...
The application of this text is not specific to traditional "advice and counsel" roles, such as: attorney, process consultant, change agent, personal advisor, etc. Read more
Published on Jan. 19 2001 by Michael H. Esnes
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Useful Professional Guidance Tool
The book provides very useful information for organizations dedicated to providing professional services. Read more
Published on Nov. 26 2000 by ERIC CLARK
5.0 out of 5 stars The Cornerstone of All Relationships
According to the authors, "The theme of this book is that the key to professional success is not just technical mastery of one's discipline (which is, of course, essential), but... Read more
Published on Nov. 13 2000 by Robert Morris
5.0 out of 5 stars Valuable and helpful!
This is a book filled with helpful checklists, valauble to anyone in the consulting field. In an eminently readable style, the authors show us not just the requirements to be a... Read more
Published on Sept. 24 2000
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