If you remember back a couple of years ago, there was a video about the Expert and how sometimes people just can’t wrap their heads around what you’re explaining as a subject matter expert. No matter what you would say the client and/or Project Manager would make a request that wasn’t possible.
Now The Expert is at it again. Lauris Beinerts published a new video poking fun at yet another instance when your client just won’t listen to you as the expert. If your expertise has ever been questioned even though you know you’re right then this video is for you, or just watch it for another laugh to end off your work week.
As you get more senior in your IT contracting profession, you naturally become more specialized and knowledgeable in your field. While you learn more and more, you begin to realize how much others don’t understand terminology and situations. Because of your extensive experience, it all comes naturally to you, but in reality, it’s remains complex for the Average Joe. This gets especially frustrating when trying to explain to a client why they should take a certain route in a project or, vice-versa, why they should not implement the solution they want to.
Get to Know Your Audience: Find out their background, what motivates them, and how they prefer to communicate. This way you can use their common knowledge to decide how to best explain your idea.
Choose the “One Thing” They Should Understand: If people have to tackle too much new information at once, they’ll get confused or forget it. Instead, focus on the critical details that they must understand and remember.
Give Context and Use Examples: Put everything into context by painting a verbal picture and showing exactly how the situation relates to the audience’s life. This makes the problem more tangible and the solution more appealing.
Watch Your Language: Use simple, every day language, rather than long terms that may seem impressive. If you must use acronyms, jargon or highly-niche phrases, take the time to explain what they mean and how they relate.
How do you explain complex situations and terminology to your teams or recruiters? Please share your tips and tricks for other IT professionals in the comments below.
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