12.13.2015

What your choice of business confidant says about you

By Austin Brailey, theguardian.com
saville row tailorWith 55% of startups failing in their first five years, a trusted ally can be a vital tool for business survival. But what sort of adviser do you need?
Most people have a confidant. I bet there’s at least one person you go to for advice, even when it is contrary to your instincts.
Many assume speaking hard truths is the primary role of a confidant; providing counsel that you need,
rather than want, to hear. Surely those that deliver the truth are more valuable than yes men?
But sometimes being impractical (and even naive) can help you to achieve success. So what are the different types of confidant out there and what makes each of them a useful sounding board?

The sanity checker

It’s common to choose a confidant who shares similar values and attitudes to you. The abnormality of a disagreement with this confidant rings alarm bells, which helps prevent you from making a decision that you’ll regret later on.
Entrepreneurs, often seen as being a particularly optimistic group, might find sanity checkers particularly useful. More often than not, the odds are stacked against business owners – 55% of small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) don’t survive beyond their first five years, according to research from the RSA. A confidant that shares your way of thinking and catches your occasional digression can help you to stay focused.
What this says about you: You are likely to be confident and self-assured and recognise that everyone, including you, has blind spots. However, you tend to look for counsel from those that mirror your attitudes, so you rarely receive radical feedback.

The tailor

Confidants don’t always have to agree with the person they’re counselling but can make recommendations based on what they believe is best for you.
If a tailor deems a risk too much for their taste but knows that you have to take it, they will advise you to do so. These confidants can have very different attitudes to those they’re advising but possess a level of empathy to make suggestions based on different personality types and not what they themselves would do in the situation.
What this says about you: You trust that your confidant has your best interests at heart and acknowledge that it can be helpful to have the advice of someone with a different approach to business.

The yes man

Yes men, or women, are rarely referred to favourably. They are depicted as offering little value to (or even offering advice to the detriment of) those they counsel in order to further their own means. However, yes people can sometimes be useful. If a visionary has everything they need to succeed but lacks confidence, positive feedback is as valuable a service as a confidant can provide.
What this says about you: You’re either someone with great ideas and judgment in need of reassurance or you are just afraid to acknowledge your limitations.

The devil’s advocate

Not everyone sees risk as a negative thing. Some of the true trailblazers in business throw caution to the wind and reap the rewards, or suffer the consequences. For these people, the devil’s advocate, someone that presents them with the potential pitfalls, can prevent failure – even if they are annoying on occasion.
What this says about you: Few people welcome criticism but you recognise that you need to be grounded with pesky detail sometimes. You might not share your confidant’s perceived pessimism but you recognise that your optimistic outlook isn’t always right either.

The expert

Relationships with confidants who possess knowledge or skills that you lack can be invaluable. And while asking the advice of experts can be daunting and can leave you open to criticism, it is worthwhile.
Those successful in their own fields often look to experts in other fields for help.
What this says about you: You accept that there’s constantly room to learn and improve. And you’ll find experts can transition into other types of confidants as

Aucun commentaire:

Enregistrer un commentaire