Are you Lean? Is the Pope Catholic?

I always find it interesting when Lean Organizations seek me out to help them with their sales and marketing. They typically have found me through the several zillion ways that you reach people but mainly because I am known for Lean Sales and Marketing or just Lean Marketing. I commend them that they are so committed to Lean and Lean Thinking that they do reach out to me. The reason they are reaching out is typical of any other company. They have a problem or a need.

I respond in typical fashion by asking what is your need or problem. Rocket science it’s not! Very often, they tell me the problem and many times describe to me what is needed. After all, they know their business better than I do. Is the Pope Catholic?

This is all said tongue-in-cheek so don’t crucify (no pun intended, I was raised Catholic) me for this as I am just making a point. However, there is a little truth in what I am saying.

The typical consulting approach is to agree and start discussing how we may be able to do that for you better than anyone else, our specialty! After you build credibility and trust, you make minor changes to their initial statements so that you can perform at your capabilities and make a little money doing it. The client may even ask you for a design proposal on what you would do and just like completing a resume you are silly not to repeat back what they have said to you. People like to hear their own words.

On the other hand, I have a habit of getting an A3 piece of paper out and drawing a line down the center. I write the problem in the upper left-hand corner and in the appropriate column, write down what they have told me and what they are asking of me; what I think we should do, how much will it cost, how long will it take, etc. In a fairly short time, we have completed the right side of the A3. Left all by itself is the problem on the left side. The next step I take is asking, “How much is it worth to complete the left side?” I think this is the difference between a typical Marketing Consultant and a Lean Marketing Consultant.

Now remember, most organizations that contact me have found me as a result of being a Lean company and practicing Lean. But now is when you find out if the Pope is Catholic. The answer that is given tells you, are they a collection of Lean tools or is the culture of Lean embedded within the organization. Every Lean company gets what I am saying. Every Lean company will tell you that they are. But will every Lean company be at the plate and willing to make the offering? Is the Pope Catholic?

If you need to re-energize your Catholicism or are Protestant, non-denominational, or something else and would like to learn how to be Lean in Sales and Marketing, check out… Lean Sales and Marketing Workshop

P.S. If you still have the money for an internet connection, and use the latter approach as a Lean Marketing Consultant, I would enjoy hearing from you.

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