#27: Explain it to your grandma

Ever been at a conference where a speaker used thousands of fancy foreign words to impress the audience, but wasn’t able to convey any message? Ever been at a meeting where participants try to surpass the others with smart sounding explanations and highfalutin formulations (e.g. “highfalutin formulations”) without contributing to any kind of clarification? Ever heart an executives quarterly financial report where the amount of buzzwords was higher than the company’s sales revenue? Ever been tempted to play buzzword bingo (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buzzword_bingo) in a business setting? Probably yes.

Using tons of buzzwords and complicated explanations is typically an attempt to mask one’s lack of understanding and knowledge. Or in the words of Albert Einstein: “You do not really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother.”

Every consultant should try rule #27: Explain it to your grandma.

Ever tried to explain your grandmother what you are doing at work? What “big data” is and how it works? Service orientation, business process management or the cloud? Contact less payment methods? How the internet works or why a smartphone is smart? Ever convinced your grandmother that social media is the future? If she got it, great. Making her understood it, means you really understood it.

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