The Business Of Consulting
I’d spent the best part of a much needed weekend break… shopping. The sun (hidden since last September) managed to burn into the face of my android assistant, before moving onto my head until I had the headache of a man who’d run a marathon dressed as a Styrofoam marshmallow. Frustration, searching for a PC router on a Sunday, when it really could have waited another day to speak to the right people, was fuelled by overheating, wanting a bargain and increasingly needing a drink.
Hints from the office router that it had `had enough’ had been emitted daily during the prior week as it had teasingly started casting a shadow of doubt we’d have a work space without lit screens full of YouTube wonder; while we pretended to be busy (that bit was a joke, but fearing its demise was on the cards, wasn’t). I sincerely thought circumnavigating inconvenience wouldn’t be a problem; intervention when the office was closed and before the next week started seemed (at the time) a good idea. I now realise I was afflicted with naivety.
Shopping around on the internet would give me an idea of what I wanted, then I only needed to find someone with commercial savvy who stocked it, place my order online and pick it up via a stop-off for some energising sugar-highs to get me through the Grand Prix later that afternoon (a sort of placebo sugar rush for the bits between the Pole start and waiting for the finish). Connecting with my new purchase wouldn’t be a problem, retailers of this size are set up to handle all types of customer, I could be a toddler deciding to set up a birthday wish-list on mum and dad’s credit card or an antisocial tech-wiz who gets organised through their keyboard: Sorted!
Not being sure what I wanted – let alone what I needed – was all brought home to me as the day slipped away. What a fool I was, thinking that choosing, purchasing and collecting something could be sooo easy….
I’d found what I thought I’d wanted, I tried to speak with someone (several times) to get advice before I purchased, I’d gone down to the store (as advised) only to find none in stock. I’d gone back online, clicked to order from another store, got right though to purchasing when the ‘do not pass go’ (out of stock) alert came up. It’s irrelevant going through the entire day’s scenario. What I wanted I couldn’t get and, I later learnt, had I got it, it wouldn’t have been what I needed. What I needed wasn’t obvious and, as I later learnt, I didn’t understand it’s what I really wanted. I’d experienced a type of boot-on-the-other-foot. What would have been relatively Lilliputian, had it been commercial or business finance related, managed to make me feel like a tethered Gulliver. Hardware was hard work.
The downside was my ‘day of rest’ disappeared (and no boss to moan to), the upside was I managed to find a really useful hardware guy to add to the outsourcing stable. But letting myself be driven into cheating my business by taking a shortcut is the most galling. I was lucky this time; it could have cost me heavily.
Image credit: pasukaru76 Article credit: Copyright SUF 2013