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Thursday, June 26, 2014

Startup Blog Insights - Thinking Agile is Important to Your Business

Taffy Williams can be found on LinkedIn, Twitter @twilli2861, ColonialTDC ,  photo
, Google+,   Facebook, and Startup  Group.  He has written more than 300 articles for: Startup Blog and Examiner Charlotte, NC- small business. More on the agile concepts may be found in soon to be released book:  Think Agile

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Agile and non-agile entrepreneurs must communicate clearly

It is impossible to know what is being communicated in these!

Some people are able to see a problem and rapidly determine solutions; the problem may be business or non-business.  Clear communication is required when describing a fix to a problem and information provided must be explicit; remember, you see the fix, they may not.
Recently, I was asked to help repair a lamp.  The lamp was missing the knob that rotates when turning on a lamp.  My instructions were, “pick up the complete part from the hardware store. The complete part includes the piece that the bulb screws into and the switch.  If the rotating knob does not fit, we can replace the whole unit.”  A few days later I asked to see what was purchased.  The person that selected the item in the hardware was not told to be careful to purchase a part with a switch that rotates rather than move from side to side.  The individual (a Ph.D.) rarely repairs anything and has limited experience in such matters.   In addition, the individual did not carefully examine the broken lamp prior to purchasing the new part.  The result was that the wrong part was purchased!
People are not always familiar with solving a wide range of problems.  When providing instructions it is important to ensure that the communication you intended to make was clear to the other person.  They may not see the problem and solution the way you do.  Take a look at the photos above.  One has to wonder what problems led to the creation of these signs.  I do not understand what is being communicated and clearly there is a different message the creator intended to convey.
The same is true in marketing products or services.  Some venders will provide a more optimistic scenario. It is easy to believe the information as standard when what was stated was really the maximum result.  For example, being told that a proposal may net as much as $50K, when that amount is rarely given can mislead the recipient. People tend to hear the information that is most beneficial to them and assume their result will be close to that presented. It may require follow up questions to determine a range of what to expect and the likelihood that you will get that result.
Agile thinkers may see the pieces of information come together in a manner to generate a new solution.  Describing that solution to others is nearly as critical as conceiving of the means of solving a problem.  This is because great execution is often needed to reach the end goal.  If the team does not understand your directions, your result may not be what you expect.
In short:  Practice your communication skills and try painting a complete and clear picture to others.  You may find you get more of what is needed and less of what they thought you said!

  Taffy Williams is the author of:  Think Agile:  How Smart Entrepreneurs Adapt in Order to Succeed to via Amazon