That was how Walt Disney put it. And it seems to go for the geniuses at Econstories.tv as well:
As of today, I’m trying out a different way of working. Instead of setting out to do a job overreachingly perfectly and letting it take the time it takes, I’m starting at the time-end. The first thing I’ll do is simply to say to myself “I can spend a maximum of x hours on this” and then adjust the quality of the work accordingly. When time is up, the work is done.
Not that you care. I’m only writing this because I want to be able to go back six months from now when this plan of mine has burst into a million little electrons and laugh at my own naivety.
Anyway, it worked for 60 Minutes.
We met in San Francisco, right by Union Square, in the summer of love 2003. We’ve had laughs and tears. Rain and shine. And we will always have the memories.
But. This is it. We have reached the end of the road. C’est fini. For real this time. All I can say is: I don’t regret a thing.
I must remember
you are rubber and nylon
Autumn is here now
The client needs to be brave.
They have to take a chance. They have to risk it. The have to be daring. They have to be prepared to go out on a limb.
Christ. I don’t know why we keep obsessing with clients having to be brave. Ok, I admit I used to say it and think it myself a long time ago but since then I’ve grown older. Or wiser.
Demanding, arguing or even expecting that a client should be brave is more often than not just a bad excuse either for a bad idea to begin with or for bad salesmanship. And when I say salesmanship I mean it in the most revering sense of the word, i.e. the ability to explain to a client why the proposed solution will add value to his or her business.
But most of all it’s a complete lack of empathy. Which is sort of disturbing in a tragi-comical way since empathy is supposed to be our forte; one of the things our clients pay us for is that we claim to understand better than they do what the target group thinks, feels and does and, hence, how the communication should be planned and executed.
Well, when we’re selling ideas the client is the target. And we behave like spoilt children.
Because, as we all know when we spend more than five seconds thinking about it, there are some pretty compelling reasons most clients are not, will not and perhaps should not be brave:
- They aren’t paid to be brave. They’re paid to deliver results.
- Most organizations don’t reward being brave or, in a more appropriate way of putting it, risk-taking.
- Being brave is not in human nature. Avoiding risk is.
So before reverting to the “argument” that a client should buy our whacky, revolutionary, bad-ass idea out of sheer bravery, maybe we should take a look in the mirror and ask ourselves why we don’t make a habit out of proposing ideas we’ve never thought of before. Or why we don’t quit our day job and write that novel we’re dreaming of. Or open that Cat-Stuff-O-Rama store. Or get a Mohawk. Why we aren’t more “brave” ourselves.
We need to start seeing the bigger picture and imagine what it would be like to be in our client’s shoes. And if it were our money. And our careers on the line.
Because, at the end of the day, most people are only human.
Disclaimer: This blog post was written by someone in a dark state of mind. Sorry.
The navel-gazing of the industry.
The groundless glorification of individuals.
The dependency on others.
But most of all I hate being in the position of a consultant. More specifically, I hate being unable to say “no” when I client asks for something that I really shouldn’t be doing. And I hate being unable to tell them I have other clients too and that they all demand my time 24/7 (not really true, but it feels like it).
Come to think of it, maybe I just hate being a wuzz.
Jag har blivit inbjuden till juryarbetet i Euro Effies 2009, vilket förstås är väldigt trevligt. Men framför allt ska det bli väldigt intressant, eftersom det är ett fint tillfälle att få plöja igenom en hel drös bidrag och se vad som är state-of-the-art när det gäller effektmätningar i “verkligheten”.
Men det första jag tänkte var: Ska jag göra det här själv? Och helt förlita mig på min egen erfarenhet och mina egna tankar inom området? Nä, det känns alldeles för omodernt. Därför behöver jag din hjälp.
Vad tycker du är det viktigaste jag ska tänka på när jag bedömer bidragen?
Om det var du som satt i juryn, vad skulle du titta på?
Nu är ju inte Euro Effies någon 100-wattaren, utan en riktig effekttävling med riktiga regler (se t ex här och här). Men jag gissar ändå att det finns utrymme för ytterligare stringens och rättesnören.
Så om du har några idéer eller tankar kring ämnet, lämna en kommentar eller maila mig på dan.landin[at]gmail.com. Långt eller kort, supergenomtänkt eller spontant, poesi eller prosa – det spelar ingen roll. Bara hör av dig.