Tag Archives: denial

The Most Important Listening Post Is The One At The Top

Rebellion happens when people do not believe they are being heard.  Sometimes it leads to revolution.

It’s easy to pick out the events of the last decade that changed the world.  Not just due to the events themselves but to the changes that were required because of them. The biggest?  9/11. Katrina. Lehman Brothers closing.

Lehman’s failure and 9/11 were caused directly by organizations.  Katrina was a force of nature but New Orleans could have been more levee prepared and the aftermath better managed by the organizations in charge.

It’s human nature not to change when we’re comfortable.  And boy do we like to be comfortable!  Regrettably one person’s comfort is another’s denial.  How often have you heard “I saw it coming but nobody above me wanted to know.”  I’ve heard it and in a few very unfortunate situations I was the one who didn’t want to know.

Social media experts counsel their clients to put listening posts in several places online.  Listen to customers.  Listen to competitors. Listen to suppliers. It’s great advice!

Here’s the thing.  Listening has to start at the top. And it has to be okay for the other listeners to bring uncomfortable information.  Unless you’re looking for a rebellion, or worse a revolution, it really the only way.

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You Have To Be Kidding Me!

I met with someone who told me he wanted to target women as clients.

The conversation went downhill from there.

He said women always defer to their husbands so it was natural that he focus on the men even if both were in his office.

I grew up with a twin brother in a home that proclaimed “It’s a man’s world!” very loudly when I would try to do something out of the ordinary.

My business partner didn’t believe me years ago when I said it was crucial that I go on calls by myself because while he was not technically proficient in that particular business I would be ignored. He’ll tell you it still happens.

I really believed it was because my career choices put me in as a definite minority. It was just part of that world. (I rarely found this working with refrigeration contractors by the way. Once they understood I knew what I was talking about and that I enjoyed working with them they were nothing but great!)

I am so disappointed to find it in the bigger world. What year is this? Will my daughter have to continue to fight this stupid, stupid thought process?

I detest looking for the silver lining – that’s denial. But I will be spending some time assessing what I think, even unconsciously, about markets I’m targeting.