I have to credit my friends Kathryn and Kristy @definitionconsulting for teaching me their “So What?”
There is news that business travel will not recover until 18 months time, so what? Small businesses are the worst hit in this pandemic, so what? #harrymegan have scandalised the Crown, so what? Vanillalaw maybe the leading law firm for SMEs, so what?
My gurus @definitionsconsulting have taught me that all of these statements mean squat, if they do not mean to help people solve a problem or enable them to do something.
If we are to matter to anyone, we need to listen, and listen carefully. Unlike a litigator, negotiators do not talk. They are trained to listen and find solutions that matter to both parties, not just one party. In an M&A deal negotiators will not make statements that a clause has to be there because that is the industry template. They listen and understand what maybe the underlying risks and how those may be mitigated, so that the deal can be made successful. Unlike lawyers, negotiators do not advertise themselves as having the ability to cut down an opponent.
As a litigation lawyer with hundreds of cases under my belt, I have committed the sin of looking at my past achievements, but never stopping to ask So What? I am blessed to have friends and teachers like Definitions to show me that I have much to learn. So What? Well, if someone as entrenched as me can be open minded enough to learn new tricks, then it matters that small business owners have to be open minded, in order to succeed in this digitally connected world!
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