I talk a lot. I had a sore throat, so I bought my usual throat medicine. Afterward, a friend told me there is now a generic, same-formula medicine available for a 20% cheaper price.
Here is what I came up with on why that didn’t bother me:
- a problem was preventing me from doing more important things, like talking some more
- I have neither time, knowledge nor patience to try and research throat syrup formulas
- I knew what I wanted, but had no idea what I needed, so asked an expert and got an answer that I could afford, bought it, and it made the problem go away
I feel that if I researched it myself the whole experience would have felt much more expensive than just paying the extra 20%.
Why is my syrup saga relevant? Because it maps out how clients often feel when they need expert advice: annoyed by a nagging Symptom that they don’t feel they can adequately solve with any confidence, and happy if someone competent can just make it go away ASAP. No details are necessary, shut up and take my money.
Experts are not usually seen as saviors, enemies, or entertainment. We are commonly seen as pop-up dispensers of solutions to serious-looking symptoms that get in the way of plans. This is why clients act so casual and are so uninterested in details, even objectively important ones.
Next time a client doesn’t bother to read or think twice, don’t be mad at them – you may do the same thing, next time that your throat hurts. It’s important to just accept it, and communicate accordingly.