Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Clients Typology: The Stealth

Picture Source: Wikipedia

The aeroplane in the picture above is Lockheed Martin's F-35 Lightening II. Its nickname is The Stealth. Stealth Technology reduces reflection/emission of radar infrared visible light. The reduction of infrared visible light make the Stealth Technology air crafts more difficult for conventional radar to detect.   

Responsibility is an abstract concept. Imagine that responsibility is not abstract but something analog to aircraft detection. The Stealth Customer escapes from it like a Stealth Technology aircraft would escape from detection by radar. 

What is wrong with taking Responsibility?
I studied Psychology about 30 years ago. In an experiment I studied about, monkeys had to perform tasks. The experiment was performed by Joseph V.Brady in 1958.

After few months monkeys who were "managers" i.e. were responsible for tasks other monkeys preformed, suffered from ulcer. "non-managers" monkeys where as healthy as they were prior to performing the tasks.

The results were explained by worries due to responsibility.
The "managers" worried the "simple workers" had to perform exactly what the "managers" asked them to do: No worries and no ulcer. 

The results could be extrapolated to human beings. 
The Stealth Customer does not want to worry. 
Why should he take responsibility and destroy his health?
He takes no responsibility.

When the Stealth is a Worker
If he is not a manager, he can perform his duties without taking responsibility.
Other co-workers may be fascinated by his stories about restaurants, vacations in exotic countries, his friends and hobbies. He is cooperating with his co-workers. No problem could be identifed.

The Peter Principle
The Peter Principle is a concept in Management Theory. The selection of  candidate is based on his current performance in another role rather than on relevant abilities to the new role.  

The result of this selection method is that they will tend to be promoted until they reach their "position of incompetence".

That could happen to the Stealth as well. He will be promoted to a management position. Sometimes he will be promoted even to an upper management position.

As you already know, the Stealth Customer will not take responsibility. A manager who is not taking the responsibility, he was expected to take, could harm the organization.  

In order to avoid of responsibility, he may use behavioral patterns of other customers type, such as The Bad, The Captive, The Paralysed Analyzer and The Covering.

Another way of avoiding Responsibility
The Stealth may use the patterns cited above. However, he could also avoid of responsibility by transferring it to another manager. It could be a very responsible manager higher in the hierarchy or a manager in the same level of the Stealth. It could even be a manager, the Stealth is managing. 
The Stealth could not care less about the other manager identity, as long as he is not taking the Responsibility.

How should a Consultant deal with the Stealth Customer?

1. He could find someone else in the organization who will take responsibility instead of the Stealth.
The natural candidates are cited in the previous section. 

2. Work with another manager in the organization instead of the Stealth. 
This method is not always possible.

3. Train the Stealth to take responsibility.
This is the most unlikely method, because in most cases it is difficult and no resources are preallocated for training.






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