A major source of frustration of enterprise architects and other professionals is the ongoing tragedy of the victory of style over substance. Many of us fail to get our key messages over to those that matter. There are several causes –
We fail to articulate our message in way that others understand
- Our message is too complex
- We provide too much depth and detail
- Our presentation skills are weak
- We don’t connect to our audience’s “hot buttons”
- We are blocked by others
- Our audience “gives up” before we get to the message
It is clear that we often need to work on our presentation skills. However, I want to make an appeal to our intended audience and those that block us from reaching them.
The key point is that we have a lot of important and sometimes business critical things to say. James McGovern discusses this subject in an eloquent manner. By not hearing these messages you are damaging your own organisations in potentially critical ways. For this reason, it is worth hearing us out. It is worth helping us to get to the point. It is worth wading through the detail. It is worth joining the dots from our points to the key issues that you face.
Will we always have a message worth listening to? No! Should you persevere? Yes! Why? The professional mindset is generally apolitical. It is more interested in doing what is right. The underlying motivation will be sound. Compare this to the backstabbing cronies who have climbed the greasy pole by stamping on the backs of others. I would rather make the effort to understand the message from an inarticulate but competent person with the right motivation than try to deconstruct the motivation for giving me information of a slick politician with suspect capability.