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What kids can teach about Outsourcing??

Let’s deal with the difficult one first – Managed Services and outsourcing is here to stay and grow. So, what does this have to do with kids? Well nothing direct, except that kids can help resolve one of the biggest barriers to outsourcing – asking for HELP!

One thing I often notice, while meeting some of the prospects, is their reluctance to ask for help. The acknowledgement comes blatantly or subtly – there is a need to improve. The pressure of efficiency, productivity, reducing costs (or justifying with equal or exceeding returns) is mounting up on each one of them.  So, why hesitate to ask for help when there is a need? The top 3 inhibiting reasons are:

a)      Asking for help is considered a sign of weakness/failure

b)      Trust deficiency in the person who offers help

c)      Waiting for someone else to do it, so I cannot go wrong

There have been many management theories propounding kids’ psychology. Without surprise, it holds well when it comes to breaking these barriers too. Let me explain how, with typical kids’ perspective and how business could go about doing it.

Asking for help is a sign of weakness/failure

  • Kids view: Why? Why? Why? The ubiquitous question that drives every parent crazy is a Childs’ natural way to learn the world around her and develop cognitive skills. The kid sees it as an opportunity to be inquisitive, seek assistance (from someone who knows), learn something new and expand their horizon. The child doesn’t hesitate to ask for help  in its quest to face the world
  • Business way: Today while businesses appreciate hard work and diligence, they expect efficiency. Asking for help is a sure-fire way to achieve it. Seeking assistance is a fun way to solve a problem together and learn something new

  Trust deficiency

  • Kids view: Kids learn whom to trust and who not, either from the parents or slowly over a period of time
  • Business way: If past experience is something to go with and the trusted partner has delivered before, then entrust them with a new challenge. Else, if you are just starting, then start small, build confidence, before entrusting with bigger responsibilities

 Waiting for someone else to do it

  • Kids view: Walk into a classroom and ask for volunteers to try out something new – you will be amazed to see the numbers of tiny hands go up. Kids yearn for new things
  • Business way: Years of conditioning to be extremely risk averse has led to this state of mind. A well-planned and executed engagement will manage & mitigate the risks. Besides, many businesses have seen success the outsourcing way – there is enough precedence available. Go and get one for your benefit

After all, kids do continue to teach us a vital lesson or two…

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