And surprise you…
I can remember being in High School and having days that felt like the world was so horrible and life would never be easy. In true girl drama fashion I would lament on how things were so HARD and life was so UNFAIR! My parents (whom I deem saints for raising my brother and I) would always tell me that the world was so much BIGGER than High School. Of course I'd just roll my eyes and tell myself they were old and had absolutely no idea what I was trying to tell them. Little did I know….
What a lesson. Life is so big. The world is so big. No one rule applies everywhere, no one approach reigns supreme, no conditions are equal to all. This stays true for you and your business as well.
Often we feel hurts or pains that we think we will never overcome. We are at a loss for what approach is best for our problems. We've tried it all!
Or have you? The business world is much bigger than you. There are lessons to be learned from many places if we're only smart enough to realize that and look around. Here are three non-Internet centric professions that you can look to for solutions when dealing with an array of issues from contracts to marketing:
1. Real Estate – Yep, these folks have written the book on selling. You'll be hard pressed to find an agent that can't point out a handful of things you should love about any fixer-upper. I've been house shopping online for a distance move these last few weeks and I can tell you the photography techniques are certainly improved and show every home from only the BEST angle. I've seen some that look great in pictures but are monsters on the walkthrough. They sell you on a home often before you even see it! From writing to delivering client perspective, this line of work is a treasure trove of ideas on how the smallest details can make the difference when talking to clients.
2. Home Builders – Is there any profession more client centric than this? Literally building someone's dream, responsible for their savings, the future home of their family! I've never seen a site build scope list longer than a full Spec sheet for a home that has been custom designed. A builder has to be personable yet reasonable, technical yet approachable, frugal yet able to deliver the most bang for a buck. They must account for unforeseen problems before they ever arise without a crystal ball. Looking at how these folks handle projects, contracts, and clients is a great lesson in project management.
3. Race Car Drivers – Probably the least expected thing on the list but hear me out. These guys have one job: WIN. I'm not a huge racing fan but I've seen enough to know that these guys are a great family and they really live and breathe what they do. They are serious but sportsman-like on the track when driving. Each one is under tremendous pressure for every single second that they are in that car. High speeds on the front lines, paying attention to positioning, being cognizant of track temperatures, regulating an intense patience for the right moment to make a big move, it's all pretty thrilling in the big picture. There are some great take-aways here on working as a team, and a community.
Have you ever taken any lessons or ideas from another unrelated profession? I'd love to hear about it!
Kimberly has been selected to speak at WordCamp Orlando in December. She's going to be starting a community focused conversation between developers and users by presenting a users-track talk. She will be speaking on things that developers wish they could tell users of their plugins or clients of their agencies. If you have any input or things you'd like to submit for consideration on inclusion to this talk you can email her at [email protected]