Flipping through the channels, I happened to hit upon the greatest line of the movie Kindergarten Cop. Arnold Schwarzenegger was an undercover cop acting as a Kindergarten teacher. While he was struggling to manage the rowdy class, he happened to complain about a headache. One child said, “Maybe it’s a tumor!” to which Arnold fired back with his Austrian accent: “IT’S NOT A TOOMAH!”
I had to laugh. In fact I ALWAYS laugh at that line, but sometimes I have to laugh because we have to tell our clients who think they have a “tumor” the same thing.
Think about if you had a headache. It could be caused by anything: a pulled muscle in your neck, stress, dehydration or something much more serious. And, being the curious beings that we are, we hop on the internet, type in our symptoms, and come to the conclusion of what the problem may be. We walk into the doctor and say, “I was on the internet last night Googling my symptoms and I really think I have the plague.”
After your doctor takes a breath (because she really tuned you out after you said, “I was on the internet last night…”) she starts to diagnose the real problem.
If you are a professional services provider you know what I mean. You probably have clients that come to you and say “I know what my problem is… it’s ‘X.'” After further digging and evaluation you might find that in fact it is “X” but the source problem is “Y” and “Z” which should be addressed first.
How do we stop the mis-diagnosis of our business problems? Here are 3 easy ways.
Google it. But then stop. Google makes us all geniuses. There is so much information out there we can self-diagnose our way to a major mis-diagnosis. Look for a few recurring themes but then put the mouse down and step away from your browser to look at the problem in the bigger picture.
Look for the counter arguments. As much as you research what you think the problem is, Google the counter argument as well. So if you thought you had a tumor you should also Google “10 reasons why my headache is not a tumor.”
Get professional help. You can take some pills for a headache to stop the pain temporarily, but if the problem persists you will not be able to avoid going to your doctor. You may need to bite the bullet, and pull in professionals to help you solve your issues. Even if you have them point you in the right direction, it is better than spinning your wheels on your problem or putting band-aids on them without getting the root cause fixed.
So next time you are Googling your way to solving your business problems, stop and think of Arnold… it’s probably not a toomah!