5 Lessons My Clients Taught Me in 2015

project-lessons-learnedAnother year in the books. I’ve had the privilege to help organizations grow, transform, and improve. Along the way, my clients have taught me some valuable lessons that shape how I work. You can’t stop learning when you view everyone you meet as a teacher.

Change is Hard

I have worked with a wide variety of client personality types over the years; some are excited, motivated and proactive about change. Others can be insecure, anxious, or apprehensive. All have had at least a short period of discomfort as they changed their mindsets and routines to a new way of doing things. Learning new skills, behaviors, tools, and processes can take from a few weeks to a year, depending on the client. Keeping these realities in mind, it is my job to support my clients through change.

Never Stop Learning

My clients endeavor to understand more about the technology landscape. It always amazes me when a client repeats back something I taught them, even after I’ve long forgotten what I said. Ultimately, much of my learning is done while I work with my clients and their teams. I learn from every experience and interaction, and apply that knowledge to future projects. I embrace these challenges, focusing on my passions, and I have fun!

Share Success

I genuinely care about my clients, and I’m excited about my consulting, coaching, training, and speaking opportunities. I’m just as elated as my clients when we successfully achieve our goals. Even when the going might get tough, clients are motivated by a consistently reliable, knowledgeable consultant who loves what they do and is as committed to success as they are to their long term relationship with the client.

Be Flexible

Project focus and direction can change on a dime and so can your clients’ strategy and objectives. You need to be ready to shift gears and adjust quickly to changes within the organizations that you work with.

Friendships are not Bounded by Age

My peer group had always been +/- 3 years. Now I’ve got friends 40 years older and 15 years younger, directly as a result of those with whom I work.

The Brown hair isn’t Coming Back

The arrow of time only points in one direction. Okay, I guess that’s six things. Must be the old age.