I’ve been doing a lot of research on introversion for a talk I’m giving. So I’ve been thinking about the Meyers/Briggs personality types as they relate to business. I’m an INTJ and have been lucky enough to have learned how to have a career that has taught me how to solve problems big and small systemically. This has not always been a way of thinking that clients or bosses have wanted in this quick twitch world.
When I have been successful in conveying that vision, that system, for solving the client’s business problem, it’s come down to the ability to capture it in story and/or metaphor that makes the benefits come alive. However, I can remember a disastrous client dinner when I was trying to make the connection between an article I’d done on Michael Jordan and the impact of one small inaccuracy in it and the client’s belief that his one data point was worth hanging his whole marketing plan on.
What I had hoped would be a colorful and entertaining way to make the point that just because the name on credit card payment for a rental car was male, did NOT mean that the shopper/decision maker was male. The client was offended by what he took as my bragging about having interviewed Michael Jordan. My lesson: know your audience and how they learn information. I hadn’t done my homework on the client—though I had on his target audience. That meant I’d missed a critical part of the sell-in by leaping to the story’s end and over the middle, which was selling him part.
“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place,” said George Bernard Shaw. And as a in introvert, I’ve had to learn as much as I’d like to have people just “get it”, I’ve learned to invest the time in building teams that are all on the same page.
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