Harvey Saying #8 – Hidden Factors

In my search for the meaning of life, the universe and everything, I must keep reminding myself that things are not always as they appear.  This fact is really evident in business and I refer to them as the "hidden factors".  These are the items that people do not reveal but are major influencers.  These are both personal things and broader issues. 

If a person has a substance abuse problem or marital difficulties, you may never know but will affect everything.  If the person is about to lose his job or had a seriously bad appraisal by his boss, how might they behave with you.   If the person has had bad experiences in dealing with other people in your role, for example salesperson or consultant.  Underlying prejudices of all types can be very insidious.  What happened just before you meet with this person?   You get the idea? 

I find that if I keep this idea in my awareness I am less likely to jump to conclusions that might lead me down the wrong path.  This idea brings to my mind one of Harvey’s favourite saying, "I am confused, help me understand."  It works miracles.

  1. Stephen Reply

    Good comment. This also ties to the post on listening and asking questions.
    As with all good processes, you need to be careful as to how you use them. In a conversation last week we were talking about how some people felt that if you had studied psychology, you were manipulative. I have often found the same issue with sales and some of the training and the perception of behaviour.
    Done with reality and honesty, the point is about understanding the other persons needs not your product or service.
    In sales they say “telling is not selling”

  2. Jim Reply

    Someone mentioned that “I’m confused” can sound manipulative or false if not used authentically. That is something to guard against. However as I said at the time I am often confused. The real idea is to be aware that there are many things going on that you will never know. They also could major influencers on your project or proposal.

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