Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Put It in Writing

The Verbals prefer briefings over memos. They like fast meetings versus staff papers.

The Visuals like to see it in writing. They get nervous with ideas just floating above the room and are eager to see them preserved and thoroughly analyzed in a decision paper.

I'm a Visual.

Even if the Verbals send a memo here or there, those messages often resemble ad hoc hallucinations. I want to see their thoughts consolidated with options, pros and cons, and a specific recommendation.

I mention this because of a recent experience with a gang of Verbals; bureaucratic muggers who aggressively bat you with one idea after another but get nervous at the utterance of one word: "Analysis."

I'm sure they can tell monster stories of paper-happy Visuals who bog things down with "On the one hand" and "On the other hand."

If we can reach middle ground, both of our management styles will improve.


Kurt Harden said...

From one visual to another, thanks for the post. There is nothing wrong with putting some verbal to paper and editing a little. Likewise, it is good to discuss ideas before (and after) putting them to paper.

Anonymous said...

Like you I'm a visual.

Incidentally I recently helped to regain control on projects managed by "verbals". As you can guess, the absence of any structured analysis and lack of written documents was at the root of the problems. 100% ideas, 0% execution.

I used memos a lot in my mission, not only for myself but also to demonstrate (by example) how to convey actionable information in a brief and clear way. A few months ago I wrote this post about the power of memos.

Bruno Collet

Michael Wade said...

Visuals of the world, unite!