Put your textbooks down!
I can be the worst for this.
In a discussion. Talking about a certain way of doing things.
Knowing exactly which chapter I’m repeating. I know the names of all the authors.
And then, to really land the punch of my argument I say “this guy who is really big in the agile scene says so too”
Some “guy” I’ve never heard of in my entire life said that too? Oh ok, it must be true then. I’m fully bought in and I’ll change my ways immediately.
I wish it were that easy.
I know how frustrating it is. Being so convinced in what you believe in, and the person you’re talking to just doesn’t take it seriously, doesn’t see your point or simply doesn’t care.
Knowing the theory only gets you so far
And for those who say it’s tough without knowing the basic theory, I hear you. Without the textbook knowledge you may not know what to look out for.
If all you do is spend your time regurgitating books and blogs, your argument holds a lot less weight.
So what can you do?
A good place to start is by trading war stories. Discussing experiences which are like for like and things where the context is completely different. – This conversation could even change your mind.
Not everyone has the experience though. Don’t worry. You don’t always need it.
What you do need is to make your point relevant to the situation you are in now.
Build a case for the change you want to see.
Show how the certain dysfunctions are negatively impacting your goals.
And make your case tangible. Show the impact in a way they will be able to understand and quantify it.
Now, you may be in a much better position for your solution to be taken seriously!
Remember though, you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink.