Monday, June 12, 2006

Keeping In Business By Promising the World

Here is a tip to any would-be Agile coaches. People love truisms. They find them impossible to disagree with. The clue is in the name. Truism. It's true. So, if you can speak in truisms, and structure your client's expectations about things which are undeniable, you're already part of the way there.

The next thing to do is to identify things that everyone wants. Here are some examples:
  • We want to sell more stuff
  • We want to make more product for less cost-per-unit
  • We want to avoid wastage
  • We want to improve our team in some way
  • We want to demolish the competition
All of these are the desires of any business. However, if you can, somehow, make a big deal of each of them, as though they're somehow new things that you can bring to the business, rather than just the regular immutable terms of engagement of ANY business, then, coupled with your truisms, you will look like the perfect person to spearhead the campaign of "moving forwards, banging the drum, into the future".

Now, here's the clever bit. You promise that all of this will be possible if the company makes a series of changes that move it ever closer to the ability to do all of these. You set the expectation that this will be a long and arduous process and you claim that the current modus operandi of the company clearly doesn't cut the mustard. You can easily prove this as it's a basic assumption of the fact that you got to speak to the boss of the company that he doesn't already believe that his company is doing everything it can to achieve all of this.

So, you're in. You have a patter that can't fail to please, a method which involves rattling the existing staff, and also involves blaming them for anything which fails to give tangible improvements, as you've stated it will be a stepwise series of improvements, Rome wasn't built in a day, they're clearly not doing it right yet... etc, etc. Brilliant.

As a final trick, mention stories of companies that have done well by improving themselves. This will build some false hope into the equation. Remember, once you've got the ear of the boss and you have set yourself up as the cure, not the cause of any problems, virtually nothing can stand in your way, especially if it's the existing staff that you've marked as the cause of the problems.

Good luck.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

best regards, nice info » »

4:53 AM  

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