Yup. I never thought I'd actually admit to being a Freak:)
How Geeks and Freaks are a necessary part of your business plan!
We have two sides of our brain, a logical "geeky side' and an intuitive and kinesthetic "freaky side." Geeks need Freaks. Here is why integrating the skillsets of both should be a part of your business plan.
Geeks and Freaks: Relate to, and understand these skillsets in your business plan.
When making a business plan it is pretty darned important to have a good balance of skillsets to run the operations of your business. If you outsource or work with others, you may also want to help to make sure that those people are working in their area of greatest strength. Ideally it would be awesome if we could all increase our side that is most lacking and become balanced types. But while we are working on that, we still need to deal with things as they are.
Even if you are an indie like I am, you may not be able to do it all if your skillset is tuned too far to one side or the other. Or it may just be too much work for one person to do efficiently.
In our Geek-loving economy most of us are somewhat familiar with why freaks need geeks: Freaks need structure and consistency and someone who can dependably deliver their freaky skills to the market place. So I will focus on why Geeks also need freaks:
Why do Geeks need Freaks? And Why do they sometimes fear freaks?
Geeks need freaks because we have been in a high tech, pendulum swing since the industrial revolution and now humans being creatures of balance, people (your market) are beginning to swing the other way to "high touch" and High spirituality. This is evident in the huge increase in out of pocket money being spent on alternative medicine over the last 10 years. People are sick of the cubicle life style and business staleness.
So the danger is that most businesses get stuck more on "one side of this" and don't take full advantage or due notice of the other side because they don't understand the benefits of the other sides skillsets! Or they can't communicate or relate to them much less know how to work with them. Most people who are geeks primarily get paid more than those who are freaks primarily-and have been taught to devalue freak skillsets in the marketplace. Look at tech jobs vs massage for instance. But to build your geek business guess what? You need to get a little Freaky!
Because the people who wisely utilize both sides get paid even more than freak-excluding businesses and enjoy their work more!
Just like you don't want your accountant to be mostly freak and zero geek. You also don't want your Marketers to be all geek and no freak. You need empathic and intuitive people that will radiate heart and connection when speaking about your business. You also need them for morale and to help innovate out of date procedures.
And- you don't want a totally freak marketer to proposition a very hard nosed geek market for you either. Finding the right balance of geek to freak in your marketers for your specific market is essential. But don't underestimate the Freak side of the force.
The freaky-emotional-kinesthetic way that people relate is the primary way that people make a decision to buy or choose a service. Advertising is hugely based on the emotional sale.
Nobody cares how much you know unless they know how much you care. And nobody can deliver that "lovin feeling" like a freak.
Now of course it is important to have dependable freaks who have enough geek to show up and be consistent and not freak out your clients also. But if you are a total geek you may be more easily freaked than the majority of your clients and customers.
Where and How does this matter in my business:
If you can recognize the ratio of geek to freak that you are- and that your contractors/partners/employees are, then you can help them (and yourself) to be more productive and also have more fun working with you. This effects 3 levels: You (administrative), Your help, and your clients/ customers.
In other words if you are such a freak that you can't even relate to geeks, that can be a big problem for your business. If you are such a geek that you can't relate to freaks then that is also a big problem!
Why? Because your market may include people who are geekier or freakier than you. You don't want to exclude a huge portion of the market! . And their is a synergy between both sides: when both are working together you are exponentially more effective and productive than either one alone! And you are creating a better service!
So first recognizing skillsets and strengths and then implementing business rituals to enhance what you've got may just be a big help to your business.
Recognizing Skillsets Strengths:
The strengths of the Geek side of the force-
- Technical Aptitude
- they can handle processes, sequence and some prioritazation
- Good Implementers
- They understand business practices as is, and they know how to hold onto what works in the real world.
- Better able to logically discern social complexities and be a good front person who won't embarass you.
The weakness of the Geek side of the force-
- No empathic social skills yet they rebel against learning them (it's harder to "feel them" which means that it's harder for them to establish trust or emotional affinity with customers/ clients in your business).
- Can get micro-focussed and lose the big picture.
- They undervalue presence, feeling, and creativity in presentation they tend to stick to just data without spice or emotion.
- People often feel that these people are too canned and un-inspiring even if they are sincere.
The strengths of the Freak side of the force-
- Brilliant and Creative- fiery passionate energy is contagious. (They are often good "sneezers" in viral marketing speak, or people who will catch what you've got and pass it on to others.)
- Empathic- can estabilish rapport and trust easily. This often makes them a good front person who won't embarass you with being a "Dud". Empathic connection is good for sales.
- Intuitive- improves the speed of your research and development, even some management procedures can benefit from being a little freakified. This can boost morale and increase vertical integration of your help or your organization. bottom line more productive!
- Holistic, Big-picture Gestalt -function interconnectivity-
- Are sometime better at Social skills due to charisma and magnetism.
- Born Innovaters- they keep things fresh.
Weaknesses of the freak side of the force-
- Often have little business "as is" understanding.
- They need structure and yet rebel against it.
- They operate so much by feeling and intuition that they need to "work differently" and innovate just to stay interested to the point of where they can't maintain a process or complete one unless it is compelling and their job description and tasks need to change regularly and often.
- They may not be able to logically understand business procedures or easily follow them.
So before you have your business plan considered "done".
1 Have some geeks AND freaks check it out,
2 See where you are planning on having various people positioned in your business and if that is their strength.
3 Build in regular, fun practices flexible schedules and job descriptions to mix it up
4 Create opportunities to both show what has and hasn't worked to create more room for effective innovation to make use of the freak side of the force.
Don't hate me, I'll get a little colorful here:
5 Show that you aren't just a whip-cracking, crusty geeky barnacle and allow for some playfulness, some fun creative time in your business relations
6 Bring in some wellness related movement art like yoga or massage onsite
7Give out spontaneous wellness gifts
8 Celebrations into your business procedures for your help and your clients-
9 maybe bring in some plants and make your place more beautiful
Try some or all of these -along with making sure that you keep the lights on and taxes paid-of course!
Doing this a little more than seems sensible is probably key to it actually making a difference in productivity. It has to be competitvely impressive to work!
When people feel that you care for them more in this way than other companies will they will be more loyal to you and spread the message of your goodness far and wide!
Learn more about the author, David Tejeda .
Comment on this article
Posted by Paula Richardson, Seattle, Washington |
May 23, 2008
Posted by David Tejeda , Seattle, Washington |
May 24, 2008
Freaks are great!
Thanks for reading it!
- viral marketing
- human resources
- business plan