Wednesday, May 23, 2018

What do you think?

All professionals learn from 2 sources - the formal (aka, the degree or the certification or the conference) and the anecdotal (aka, experience).

The formal is generic. Anyone can read the same books and become a doctor, engineer, IT person or CA. Everyone who holds that degree knows the exact same things that you do.

The latter - the anecdotal, is where things get really interesting. Doctors learn from listening to patients, that what the pharma company tells them is not true. The medicine does not work as intended on some patients and instinctively know when to not prescribe that drug in the future. Consultants learn from businesses how processes actually work and how every workplace does the same thing differently. Automation experts learn from clients about all the small things that make each assembly line unique. We, the IT professionals, learn from our clients how they can use the system to do the things that the user manual said the system cannot do.

Which is why, the breakdown of listening skills, in the long run, hurts the professional more than it hurts the client. The doctor brushed off my concern that this vaccination did not work so well for my child the last time. I change the doctor, but the doctor has lost an opportunity to understand when a vaccine will not work. The IT consultant who just shook his head and said, "The system does not allow for reference check data" missed the chance to learn that the applicant quiz functionality can be applied to report ref check information easily.

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