As a consultant, I've been told by a few companies that if I steer companies their way, I would be compensated. I expect that the practice is legal, but I have severe doubts as to whether it is ethical, and I have never done it. (For the record, I don't even recall which companies made such offers.) Given this widespread practice, clients who hire consultants must clarify whether it's acceptable for these consultants to accept commissions.
Today's Wall Street Journal has a page-one article about a health care consultant who accepted commissions from a company he recommended to his client. Ironically, this was after the client fired the previous consultant for the same behavior. I can describe the consultant's situation as a failure to disaggregate: he should have distinguished between the activity of providing impartial recommendations and the business of working for a commission.
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