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Just the Facts, ma’am!

April 30, 2010


Some of us remember Joe Friday’s famous “Just the Facts, ma’am” quote.  So in that vein, a warning to my partners – I might not be paying attention if I’m not getting the facts I need!  I’m not one for a great big preamble or leadup to an answer to my question – in fact, my brain is in agony and wondering why won’t that person won’t just get to the point!   In the meantime, I’m not paying attention until the point is made and probably thinking about resolving the 5 other things I needs to do. 

It’s a blessing and a curse.  A blessing in that I can disseminate a lot of information and get to a decision quickly.  It also enables me to wear a lot more hats than many of my friends tell I should be wearing!  But, it’s a curse, because I’m usually that person in the meeting with a pained expression for 30 minutes and looking at my watch 50 times.  Although, over the years I think I’ve been able to fake it, I hope!   How many of us have sat through presentations and meetings and thought, “I get it already, can’t we just decide?”  It’s really agony when these are accompanied by 50 Powerpoint slides!  Really, can’t you illustrate this in only a few slides, or better yet – send me an email? 

I’ve mentioned this to my business partners, but I don’t think Ace really believes me, and I feel bad because she loves a long, suspenseful lead-up.  At a recent meeting, Spinner had to tell her that she’d better get to the point fast, or I was going to stop listening!  Thanks Spinner – I owe you one!  Ace – I apologize in advance for all of the times I’m not going to be listening to your preamble.  This is also the reason you will be our liaison with the zipperman – he really has perfected the art of the preamble.  I really beleive it is a strength of Smashing, that we have a variety of styles. 

As a mother, I think I’ve learned to be a lot more patient.  But now that my boys are getting older – I’m teaching them the importance of the executive summary.   Often my youngest son will start a sentence, “Mom, guess what happened on Spongebob?”, and then proceed to tell me all 15 minutes of that particular episode – Oh, the agony!  Really, what happened to Spongebob already!?  The ironic thing is when I ask him what happened at school – he answers “nothing!”.  How can that be?  He was at school for 6 hours and nothing happened!

I don’t want anyone to think that I’m never listening.  Nothing is more enjoyable than laughing with friends over great conversation, can do it for hours, ideally with a lovely glass of red wine.  But if I ask a question – please answer me, so that I can get back to the fun! 

I’m going to end this now, since I’m no longer listening to my own typing .

Have a Smashing weekend!

PS For all the pedantic out there, I do realize what Friday actually said is “All we want are the facts”.

Copyright 2010 Smashing LLC Copyright 2010


5 Comments leave one →
  1. tennisdress permalink
    April 30, 2010 7:24 am

    Nice entry, but a little long. Just get to the point already! I don’t have all morning!

    • April 30, 2010 7:52 am

      LOL Of course I never said it applied to my own story-telling, I can listened to myself forever! I just cannot ask myself a question!

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