**Fifteen Types of Clients
Known to Statistical Consultants**

Sender: Stat-L Discussion List <STAT-L@MCGILL1.BITNET>

From: James Ssemakula <JAMES@UCRAC1.UCR.EDU>

Subject: client types & consultant types

The following table is from Gerald van Belle 1982. Some aspects of
teaching biostatistical consulting. in Rustagi J.G & D.A. Wolfe (eds) *Teaching of Statistics and Statistical Consulting.* Academic Press (pp
343-365).

Table 3. Some Extremes in Client Types, Their Characteristics and the Expected Roles of the Statistical Consultant.

Observed Client Type |
Characteristic |
Expected Consultant Type |

Dempsey Dumpster | Wants to dump the whole problem into the consultant's lap. | Slave |

Rubber Stamper | Just wants p value < 0.05 certified. Preferably
p < 0.01. |
Witch Doctor |

Type III Personality | Comes with wrong question. Does not want to consider correct answer. | Type III Statistician |

Airport Professor | Wants analysis yesterday for tomorrow's conference in New Zealand: Leaving tonight. | Infinite Statistican |

Dr. Northcote | Will take all available - and unavailable - time. | Dr. Parkinson |

Kitchen Statistician | Wants statistician's approval of paper's statistical analysis severely criticized by referee. | Full Professor |

Dr. T. V. Savant | Has vague feeling of needing statistics for valuable
dataset. Wants statistician to define the question as well as the
answer and write it up. Will consider making statistician 5^{th}
author on this important paper. |
Psychiatrist |

Innocent Abroad | Does not understand t test but wants factor analysis on
20 cases with 50 variables. |
Magician |

Tom Thumb | Everything's gone wrong in the experiment but the data are still "valuable and valid." | Incurable Optimist |

Hydra | Every answer generates 9 more (quick) questions. | Hercules |

Wallflower | Successively more complicated (simple) explanations to save the consultant's time. | Job |

Dr. Avis | Wants some advanced analysis that competitor used in paper on same topic. Is sure competitor didn't understand it either. | Dr. Hertz |

Tinkerer | Just wants to make a minor change and rerun analysis that took 5 weeks. | Sisyphus |

Encyclopedia Salesman | Just wants 5 minutes for answer to simple question. Can be handled over the phone. | Gullible George |

Scientist | Considers statistician as coworker and collaborator in the scientific enterprise. | Statistician |

I also found this table reprinted in the *
The Statistical Consultant*, Spring 1995, Volume 12, No. 1, American
Statistical Association.

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