On a recent cruise, a woman at my dinner table was miffed because her seat at the table was facing the revolving door of the kitchen.
She pouted most of the dinner because of this, whispering her dissatisfaction to her husband for all to hear.
This would be like attending a meeting with a customer and displaying dissatisfaction because the visitor’s parking lot was full or because you had to wait an extra five minutes while your customer dealt with an urgent issue.
If you were the customer, would you select that company to do business with you?
If you were seated at that dinner table, would you seek out that woman’s company again? Our own actions govern what our future holds.
When the choice presents itself, will you be the company that the customer wants to hear more from, or will you be the company that customers want to avoid?
I recently met an individual leading a project who claimed to be the primary expert for all facets of the project.
He claimed to be the technical expert, the marketing expert, the financial expert, the project management expert, and the legal expert.
How can this be?
It is understandable that he would have knowledge in all areas, as a leader. But being the expert in all areas? His claims shed a shadow of doubt on an initiative that is otherwise worthy, which was a pity.
Successful project teams draw from various experts who all understand the objectives, risks, and the plan to achieve the business outcomes.
In teams I have worked with on major new business, one of the first orders of battle is to identify who those experts are, and ensure they are onboarded onto the project, so that they can not only perform their function of expertise well, but they can add value to the overall solution.
Recently I was invited to participate in an evaluation team for Canada’s Networks of Centres of Excellence, to review a funding proposal.
I was pleased to have this opportunity, because it enabled me to provide my expertise, on a volunteer basis, to assist the Government of Canada in making important funding decisions. This is Canadian taxpayer money we are working with; this is important.
I was struck by the expertise and variable skillsets of my fellow team members. All had at least 25 years’ of relevant experience in business, academia or research. All were highly skilled in their areas of expertise. And all had the experience behind them to know what would work and what would not work.
As well, the team at Canada’s Network for Centres of Excellence did a good job of compiling a roster of experts who each had different backgrounds and expertise.
The clincher? Even though we were all of different backgrounds and expertise, we all came together and shared the same conclusion in the end. Far easier than in the novel Twelve Angry Men.
It was amazing how six diverse experts came to a common conclusion.