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Get faster, smarter, nicer data science consultants

Cindy Tonkin +61 412 135 426

I am Cindy Tonkin. I am a coach, facilitator and trainer.

They call me the consultants’ consultant, because I consult to consultants. Specifically I work with data scientists who are internal consultants.

I help them work smarter, faster, and “nicer”.

My consultancy career began in 1986 at Accenture. More than 100 companies have used my services since I founded my own consultancy in 1992.

In this century 100% of my work has been repeat or referral work. So my clients like what I do!

I’ve written 18 books on consulting and related fields.

cindy tonkin business

I’ve worked with data and insight teams at Commonwealth Bank, National Australia Bank, Suncorp and Telstra. See more clients here.


cindy tonkin business podcast

My podcast, Smarter Data People, gives the data science community valuable insights into leading world class data science teams.

Do more with less, manage geniuses better, get happier stakeholders

My clients face three big problems.

  • Trying to do more with less
  • Working with hard-to-manage geniuses who can sometimes feel more like a liability than an asset
  • Keeping their stakeholders (and their boss) happy

If you too have these problems then we should talk
Together we can do these 3 things:

  • Measure the potential in your team: (could you save 20% or 40% of their time if they worked differently?)
  • Focus on where you’re headed, find out what’s important and what really isn’t, and make sure everyone knows which is which
  • Build acumen: fill knowledge gaps, listen to customers, say no nicely, manage scope and do what’s most important first.

Improve things and care about people

So why do I do this?

As a young consultant I worked with a productivity consultancy. We would regularly save our clients 20 – 40% on their salary bill in 10-15 weeks. We worked uniquely on a return on investment basis (spend a million, get two million back). It was challenging and varied and I learnt lots. But I eventually left because I felt that I wasn’t treating my clients properly. I went on a quest to discover:

  • How do we inspire clients to want to change and then take action?
  • What makes hard decisions easier?
  • How do we get complex ideas across simply?

Fast forward 20 years, I now help other consultants with brilliant technical skills do exactly those things.

Caring about wasted time is in my nature. Working in productivity improvement honed my appetite for doing things right even more. While I have a deep-seated desire for things to work properly, we must care for people too.

I know that smart people can work much better and faster and nicer when we pay attention to customers and clients. And it makes the planet a better place too!

Let’s start now!

So what can we do together? There are three ways we can work together.

  1. Smarter Data People – renovate your team
  2. Measure Potential Analysis
  3. Get Strategic – offsites

Smarter Data People – renovate your team is a 15 month program where we renovate your team together.

It puts your data science team to work on the important problems faster, targets wasted time, delights your stakeholders and saves money. And of course your team is happier too.

In the first few months you’ll see silos break down, meetings become more productive and you’ll stop inching and start leaping toward your vision.

Haven’t worked with me yet?

Bring me in to analyse and quantify the potential in your team. Let’s find out if you are leaving 20% or 40% of your team’s time on the table. Then when you have the answer to that, you’re ready to move forward. And we will know where to target first.

The key to this option is helping you realise how much waste is around.

Then we can define a basic roadmap to reclaim that lost time. So you can make your stakeholders, your boss and your team happier. You can focus their time on what matters and identify any political liabilities.

It’s then easy to roll right into the Smarter Data People program.

It will show you your assets (people, knowledge, relationships) and point out your liabilities. Then you’ll know where to target when we start working together.

Get strategic

If you’ve not yet worked with me, then the best place to start is with a strategic offsite for your key team members.

We always make the best decisions we can on the information available to us. Make sure that everyone in your team has the right information on what your strategy is. Get everyone in your team clear on where you’re all headed so that their decisions can easily align with yours. Book a strategic offsite with me now. Delegating, briefings and day-to-day interactions become smoother. Things get done because people know what needs to be done and what the “big rocks” are.

Ultimately, though, you want to get Smarter Data People program working with your team. So you can make sure your teams solve the important technical problems faster with less hassle. And thank the heavens for how great they are.

We can make things work FAST

  • Find and measure opportunities to improve. Then put
  • Attention on what matters strategically, so we can add in
  • Smarter work habits and
  • Track and test that what we’re doing makes a difference.

Let’s start now!

Here’s how we start: let’s speak by phone. Talk to me about an obligation-free meeting time management analysis. I only work with 3 organisations at a time, so make a time to speak to me for 10 minutes now: this link gives you a window into my diary so you can book a time that works for your commitments.

There’s so much more your team could be doing. If you feel bogged down take a breath. Then talk to me. We can make your days feel lighter and smoother. The team will hum, your boss will smile, and your stakeholders will ask you what you’ve done to suddenly make things work so well!

Find out about what clients think of my work here and here.

If you’re more interested in my artistic and improvisational pursuits, visit my art blog here.

Make your Data Scientists work smarter, faster and nicer: speak to Cindy