“Area of relatedness”. This is one of the key topics according to me.
What’s relevant for me may not be relevant for someone else. What’s difficult for me might be an insignificant topic for others.
How many times have you experienced this?: you are participating in discussions where the different parties present are talking the same thing yet no one is able to understand each other. You’ve found yourself intervening just to make people listen and understand each other! This is a perfect case of miscommunication. Not intentionally, but just due to no common ground of understanding.
As good citizens of the consulting world, where, as the word automatically suggests, you need to ‘consult’ your customers on topics you know best; how will you do it effectively if you simply left the mapping of the labyrinth of information in their hands still? If you did so, you absolved yourself of one of the most important responsibilities that came with your job: ‘consult’.
In order to consult, you need to understand their language, map their information, respect their data, navigate through their processes, empathise with their story, and after all this bring out your knowledge on the drawing board and create your best creation for them. Your technical knowledge is no good if someone can’t understand how to use it in their world. And if you left your customer to map in their heads your fantastic technical knowledge and apply it to their business, it shows poorly on your ability to consult well. You might get lucky few times with special intelligent customers, but that will thwart your consulting skills and limit your thinking. In fact you haven’t thunk enough yet! (Now don’t miss my deliberate mis-spell here…..was meant for effect! 😂).
I urge my fellow consultants to burn down limiting thoughts and step out into the real consulting world. There’s a whole lot of green out there.