Welcome!

Wearables Authors: Donald Meyer, Dana Gardner, Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White

Blog Post

At the Office, Are You a Doctor or a Patient?

Everyone experiences challenges at work

Everyone experiences challenges at work. Whether it’s an individual contributor or the CEO, everyone has to go through the same basic set of issues that plague virtually all workers everywhere. But not everyone handles those problems the same way. Conversation is the usual outlet for most people. But how you conduct those conversations says a lot about you. The question during these conversations is: Are you a doctor or a patient?

Doctors and patients

We have all been a patient at some point or another. Regardless of how smart or rich or powerful we are, we walk into that little examination room and wait for what feels like an eternity before a white-coat-clad doctor passes the portal with her head buried in a file while she tries to determine who you are and why you are there to see her.

It’s an interesting dynamic between a doctor and patient. The doctor, by virtue of her position, has more authority in the relationship. And so most patients, regardless of their standing outside of that tiny examination room, assume a slightly deferential if not completely subordinate role. This transformation can be profound as commands yield to requests and confidence to hesitation. Otherwise powerful people take on an entirely different disposition.

Attribution of responsibility

Part of the doctor-patient relationship is the attribution of responsibility. When a patient sees a doctor, he expects on some level that the doctor will help make him well. In the extreme, there can be an abdication of responsibility as the patent yields entirely to the doctor.

The psychology here is powerful. When things are not going well, there is comfort in placing responsibility with someone else. Note here that I am talking about responsibility, not blame. When you do not know how to improve your situation, you can take solace in knowing that at least there is someone else who is in a position to know what to do next.

Of course, if we think about things a bit more deeply, we realize that the doctor is just another person. Sure, she has been trained and has more domain expertise than you, but she is ultimately no more responsible than you are. But this point somehow gets dropped when you sit on that table and she scrawls her notes in her doctor’s pad.

What if patients are doctors?

But what happens if the patient is himself a doctor? The relationship between patient and doctor changes. Doctors understand that other doctors are just people. Their skill comes from training and experience, both of which allow the doctor to participate in a medical process. And when that process works well, it yields answers.

When a doctor becomes a patient, he doesn’t give up responsibility. Rather, he and his doctor become complicit in reaching a positive outcome. They talk to each other more as peers than as subordinates. In these cases, the doctor himself becomes a part of the very process he is relying on to become better.

Doctors sometimes make lousy patients

Of course, some doctors-turned-patient assume that they know more than the doctors responsible for their care. It is essential that these patients work with their doctors, taking guidance but not becoming completely subservient. You want to have a clear leader, but you do not want to relegate yourself to being only a passenger along for the ride.

Applying the doctor-patient dynamic to working relationships

When there are maladies at work, where do you go? Most people will take their issues to directly to their boss. They will talk about the situation in excruciating detail. In many cases, they will bring up unrelated facts because they are not entirely certain which points deserve attention. They explain the situation with the hope of getting remediation.

If you think about it, this is not that different than a patient explaining symptoms to his doctor. Not every condition is a symptom. And the hope is that you leave the office with a diagnosis of what is wrong and some corrective action.

Are you a doctor or a patient?

When you have these conversations with your boss, it is instructive to know whether you are more doctor or patient. Doctors will tend to have a more authoritative conversation focused on the facts. The discussion is less about the noise that surrounds a condition and more about the possible remediation. There is next to zero attribution of blame as the dialogue is concentrated on remediation.

Patients behave differently. Without knowing the difference between cause and effect, they observe a bunch of symptoms without really tying them together. They focus the conversation more on the current state of things rather than the corrective action. The balance of the conversation leans towards describing in perfect detail the problem rather than the solution.

The bottom line

Every interaction with your management chain is effectively a dress rehearsal for your career. We all go through challenging times. You need to understand two things: first, your boss does not represent some panacea capable of curing everything, and second, how you talk to your boss says a lot about your capacity to lead yourself.

With this in mind, be mindful of whether the conversation you initiate is closer to a doctor-patient or a doctor-doctor discussion. If you find that you are too frequently playing the role of the patient, you likely need to change the dialogue. Try talking more about the process of remediation, spending less time on laying out every symptom in perfect detail. Perhaps consider possible solutions in advance of the conversation. And if the doctor has already diagnosed the problem, you might be better off spending the time on the treadmill rather than in the examination room again. More directly, be acutely aware of whether the issue is the lack of diagnosis or cure.

[Today’s fun fact: The act of chewing an apple is a more efficient way to stay awake than caffeine. What demon is espousing this nonsense?!]

The post At the office, are you a doctor or a patient? appeared first on Plexxi.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Michael Bushong

The best marketing efforts leverage deep technology understanding with a highly-approachable means of communicating. Plexxi's Vice President of Marketing Michael Bushong has acquired these skills having spent 12 years at Juniper Networks where he led product management, product strategy and product marketing organizations for Juniper's flagship operating system, Junos. Michael spent the last several years at Juniper leading their SDN efforts across both service provider and enterprise markets. Prior to Juniper, Michael spent time at database supplier Sybase, and ASIC design tool companies Synopsis and Magma Design Automation. Michael's undergraduate work at the University of California Berkeley in advanced fluid mechanics and heat transfer lend new meaning to the marketing phrase "This isn't rocket science."

@ThingsExpo Stories
The Internet of Things (IoT) is growing rapidly by extending current technologies, products and networks. By 2020, Cisco estimates there will be 50 billion connected devices. Gartner has forecast revenues of over $300 billion, just to IoT suppliers. Now is the time to figure out how you’ll make money – not just create innovative products. With hundreds of new products and companies jumping into the IoT fray every month, there’s no shortage of innovation. Despite this, McKinsey/VisionMobile data...
The IoTs will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, will demonstrate how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and share the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the development proc...
SYS-CON Events announced today TechTarget has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. TechTarget is the Web’s leading destination for serious technology buyers researching and making enterprise technology decisions. Its extensive global networ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MangoApps will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. MangoApps provides modern company intranets and team collaboration software, allowing workers to stay connected and productive from anywhere in the world and from any device. For more information, please visit https://www.mangoapps.com/.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Commvault, a global leader in enterprise data protection and information management, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Commvault is a leading provider of data protection and information management...
The essence of data analysis involves setting up data pipelines that consist of several operations that are chained together – starting from data collection, data quality checks, data integration, data analysis and data visualization (including the setting up of interaction paths in that visualization). In our opinion, the challenges stem from the technology diversity at each stage of the data pipeline as well as the lack of process around the analysis.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Alert Logic, Inc., the leading provider of Security-as-a-Service solutions for the cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Alert Logic, Inc., provides Security-as-a-Service for on-premises, cloud, and hybrid infrastructures, delivering deep security insight and continuous protection for customers at a lower cost than traditional security solutions. Ful...
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, wh...
In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Bruce Swann, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Adobe, will discuss how the Adobe Marketing Cloud can help marketers embrace opportunities for personalized, relevant and real-time customer engagement across offline (direct mail, point of sale, call center) and digital (email, website, SMS, mobile apps, social networks, connected objects). Bruce Swann has more than 15 years of experience working with digital marketing disciplines like web analytics, social med...
Designing IoT applications is complex, but deploying them in a scalable fashion is even more complex. A scalable, API first IaaS cloud is a good start, but in order to understand the various components specific to deploying IoT applications, one needs to understand the architecture of these applications and figure out how to scale these components independently. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Nara Rajagopalan is CEO of Accelerite, will discuss the fundamental architecture of IoT applications, ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Tintri Inc., a leading producer of VM-aware storage (VAS) for virtualization and cloud environments, will exhibit at the 18th International CloudExpo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that ContentMX, the marketing technology and services company with a singular mission to increase engagement and drive more conversations for enterprise, channel and SMB technology marketers, has been named “Sponsor & Exhibitor Lounge Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York. “CloudExpo is a great opportunity to start a conversation with new prospects, but what happens after the...
SYS-CON Events announced today that EastBanc Technologies will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. EastBanc Technologies has been working at the frontier of technology since 1999. Today, the firm provides full-lifecycle software development delivering flexible technology solutions that seamlessly integrate with existing systems – whether on premise or cloud. EastBanc Technologies partners with p...
WebRTC is bringing significant change to the communications landscape that will bridge the worlds of web and telephony, making the Internet the new standard for communications. Cloud9 took the road less traveled and used WebRTC to create a downloadable enterprise-grade communications platform that is changing the communication dynamic in the financial sector. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Leo Papadopoulos, CTO of Cloud9, will discuss the importance of WebRTC and how it enables companies to fo...
The IoT is changing the way enterprises conduct business. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Hoffman, Vice President at EastBanc Technologies, discuss how businesses can gain an edge over competitors by empowering consumers to take control through IoT. We'll cite examples such as a Washington, D.C.-based sports club that leveraged IoT and the cloud to develop a comprehensive booking system. He'll also highlight how IoT can revitalize and restore outdated business models, making them profitable...
SYS-CON Events announced today the How to Create Angular 2 Clients for the Cloud Workshop, being held June 7, 2016, in conjunction with 18th Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo, at the Javits Center in New York, NY. Angular 2 is a complete re-write of the popular framework AngularJS. Programming in Angular 2 is greatly simplified. Now it’s a component-based well-performing framework. The immersive one-day workshop led by Yakov Fain, a Java Champion and a co-founder of the IT consultancy Farata Systems and...
What a difference a year makes. Organizations aren’t just talking about IoT possibilities, it is now baked into their core business strategy. With IoT, billions of devices generating data from different companies on different networks around the globe need to interact. From efficiency to better customer insights to completely new business models, IoT will turn traditional business models upside down. In the new customer-centric age, the key to success is delivering critical services and apps wit...
Join us at Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo 2016 – June 7-9 at the Javits Center in New York City and November 1-3 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – and deliver your unique message in a way that is striking and unforgettable by taking advantage of SYS-CON's unmatched high-impact, result-driven event / media packages.
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, will provide an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that BMC Software has been named "Siver Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. BMC is a global leader in innovative software solutions that help businesses transform into digital enterprises for the ultimate competitive advantage. BMC Digital Enterprise Management is a set of innovative IT solutions designed to make digital business fast, seamless, and optimized from mainframe to mo...