Is it helpful or is it just patronising?

There is a lot of noise out there at present, quite possibly more than usual. This is fair, to a point, as it is impossible to argue that there is also not a lot going on. From cost inflation to mental wellbeing, the “Great Attrition” to what technology to use in the office and everything inbetween. There also seems to be a “how to…in 5 easy steps.” and a “9 ways to measure…” around every corner. But is this content and thinking helpful or simply a patronising irritation and distraction?

In a recent conversation with a senior exec it was noted that many people talk rather than do and that the word “change” should be documented as the word to illustrate the most used term and sentiment for 2022 – with us thankfully having progressed from “You’re on mute” as the highest contender for 2020. We definitely do not seem to be out of the “change” window yet and many argue that some of the most impactful change and difficulties are yet to be seen and experienced. So how can we have a “5 easy steps” solution to ever changing situations and problems? And how can “How to…” solutions which merely talk at the recipient and often show a lack of understanding of the depth of the issues at play really be of value?

Just as it may be difficult to appreciate the value of a 25 year old life coach who has yet lived sufficient “life” to enable adequate “coaching”, one could argue that there may be more value in finding more reliable and perhaps better suited naratives and solutions than a lot of the noise currently in circulation. But where and how?

The pandemic raised awareness of so much and on so many levels, created humility, built trusted relationships and many argue truly enabled an understanding and appreciation for the fact that “we are all in it together and all trying to figure it out, together”. So what has changed? Do we really have the answers when the questions continue to change? Should we rather be looking to one another to collaborate, share knowledge and respectfully find solutions, together?

There is no guarantee that we are out of the proverbial woods so perhaps it is time to cast our minds eye back to the very recent past when we reached out, listened to each other and actually heard. When we came together with humility and looked to find solutions together. When we spoke with, rather than spoke at.