I tell you right now: there are two things your clients never care for. It’s true. They don’t care, and it’s about things you think are important. If you keep insisting you will lose them, sometimes forever.
It surely is impressive – what many professionals know on their specific topic. So much knowledge and it can go into great detail.
But their ability to communicate this effectively when it matters? Not so great.
Usually, there is incredible rigor when dealing with numbers – easy to understand – but not so much when it comes to the use of language, words.
Frankly, these experts say too much and leave clients overwhelmed and confused.
I’ve done so much!
I remember as a young consultant I felt compelled to share with the world how much I knew and how busy we had been.
I bet you do too.
Clinging to what we’ve done so thoroughly gives the professional great comfort. My secret to share…?
No one cares!
I found this out the hard way, over one weekend in Kearney’s Berlin office… Struggling with the executive summary of our presentation. So much to tell the client!
My principal insisted Friday morning: “Max, what do the directors absolutely need to know? What’s the essence?”
I still remember his stare; I felt like a schoolboy.
That weekend I stayed behind, writing and rewriting. Scrunched up pieces of paper littering the floor around me. I sweated through it until … I had it: just the essence.
It was bloody hard work.
I learnt then that clients don’t care how much you know or what you have done. These you include for your comfort.
You have to communicate with your clients just what’s essential for them, so they can do something meaningful with it.
It’s not easy.
Reminds me of Mark Twain (or was it Cicero or Ben Franklin?). Wasn’t it something like,
“Couldn’t take the time to write you a short letter…”
But frequently you have to. It’s why you got hired.
It’s your job!
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