I Will Mute You: The Frustrative Assumptive Experience

“One more time and I will mute you.”  I said that to  a video participant after I’d already asked him four times to please be quiet and let the other person talk. This wasn’t a power grab or show of force. The video session was to prep a business case presentation. I’d already worked with this guy the week before and he had completed this 10 minute exercise I take participants through. 

He: She can use my powerpoint, we worked on the same project

Me: No. The board wants you to present what you did.

He: Well she can tweak mine, we did the same thing

Me: No, You are two different people, you did not do the same thing. 

He: Well, She can use mine as an example

Me: No, I appreciate your generosity and willingness to share, please let me do this 10 minutes with her like I did with you.

He: OK, I can show mine side by side…

Me (cutting him off) : No.

The three of  us laughed. Then I was able to get started. OK, what’s was the business problem? Y’all now he couldn’t  help himself; he spoke again,  That’s when I said “one more time and I will mute you.” In the end, two different experiences  of the same project emerged.

Business Problem.Our services  were  not selling.We don’t work if our services don’t sell,. We the team, were afraid of being laid off.
ChallengesThe sales team was not selling our services. The sellers were no longer getting a commission for selling our services.
SolutionI developed proof points for the value of our services and a business case for the clients as a sales tool.I developed a new product and proposed  it be included with the sale of the software. The executive team accepted this proposal.
ResultOur services are selling.Our team is fully engaged and deployed.

Particularly of interest for this was how the male and female had a different experience. I’m careful not to make this a he said, she said, or versions of the story. Those things imply a right versus wrong. The multiple times I told the guy to be quiet, wasn’t to show a right or wrong, but, to show how you can form an “assumptive experience” and become impervious to anything else. I highlighted male and female because this shows how diversity in thought leads to success. This 10 minute exercise showed how each focused on a particular high value area that made this project successful. 

This week, consider the impact of the assumptive experience.


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