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I promise I will...

...not try to sell you
I will look for ways to help you, esp. before we work together (if ever)

...not work with you if I don't think I can help
and I'll be very clear about it, even if we disagree

...not worry about "giving away the farm" to you
I know that sharing genuinely useful information always pays off

...be genuinely curious about your work
and have fun getting to know you

...continually absorb and synthesize the best ideas from my field
and share them freely with you

...respect you, your work, your organization
no exceptions

...treat our relationship as confidential
no exceptions

...be attuned to where we are in the process
and we'll change gears or take a short walk

...notice anything that may hamper our project
and tell you immediately

...give you every reason to trust me
and no reasons not to

...take responsibility for my mistakes
and apologize with humility

...see opportunities to apply my skills, knowledge, and experience to help you
regardless of where that ends up being

...support and encourage you during our project
and long after

...not judge where your self management skills currently are
hey - we've none of us been taught this stuff

...push back when needed
but tactfully and within reason

...sometimes send bulky bumpy delightful packages

Reader Comments (8)

I think it is a real testament to your integrity that you got me to click on "bulky," "bumpy," "delightful" AND "packages!" ;-)

In all seriousness, I think these are good rules to apply in our social interactions as well.

January 31, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterRebecca

Thanks a bunch, Rebecca.

Hey, you've got a very cool [ profession | http://www.blogger.com/profile/02356712338959918065 ]: [ Musicologist! | http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Musicology ]

February 1, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMatthew Cornell

These promises would look really nice hanging on the wall of offices around the city. Sometimes, we need a little nudge. A little push to show us that some things in life are necessary. That we should look at situations with practicality and yet not compromise our own values.

Much appreciated, Jay. I wasn't trying to be too gushy - I had just had a realization that there's much more to my work (and I what I give to my clients) than the "technical" side of personal productivity (much of what I write about here). There are lots of fine bloggers about the topic, but I think very few of them speak from the perspective of teaching it to others as a profession...

Hey - Thanks for the pointer to [ Google Matt Cutts Gives Tips to Small Business Owners | http://www.memberspeed.com/blog/seo/googles-matt-cutts-gives-tips-to-small-business-owners ] .

February 9, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMatthew Cornell

Very nicely put. May I borrow and adapt it for personal use, as a checklist to look at when approaching a client?

February 10, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterTim

Hey Tim - thanks for asking. Sure you can use it. I built it up from others, of course.

February 11, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMatthew Cornell

A bit late, but I only just found this. That is a beautiful ideology (I'm not smart so I hope thats the right word), and one that many people could incorporate into their lives, both professional and personal, and experience vast improvement. I know I could. But sometimes an ideology is not enough. Unfortunately the organisation I last worked for had similar "brand values", but truly not one member of management I had any dealings with truly lived them. It was a shame, because with a little more of living these, that place could have been heaven to work for, as it turned out, it was no great concern to walk away.

February 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterThe Addict

The Addict - I completely agree re: talk vs. walk. From what I've heard from others, the organization has to have deep and continuous buy-in at all levels, and that includes getting every person really thinking about her job, and how it directly relates to the organization's goals.

One book you might find relevant is [ The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement | http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0884271781?ie=UTF8&tag=masidbl-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0884271781 ]. It talks about this...

Thanks very much for the comment.

February 16, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterMatthew Cornell

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