You stand before the service desk at your local car repair: “Well, I’m afraid your freemus is shot. That’s going to be $599. Oh, and I recommend you also upgrade your framus. Another $299.99. And while you’re at it….” You feel the blood drain from your face, and know the money is just about to drain from your bank account. What’s worse, you feel obligated to get it done. What to say?
Next stop is the dentist. She reviews your updated x-rays, and spells it out in no uncertain terms: a whole mess of work, for a whole lot of bucks. When you squirm and say you want to think about it, she looks at you incredulously. How can you wait? In your mind you know you’ve got braces coming for both kids and other obligations to meet, so it’s a decision to make. But she is staring right through you. What to say?
I could have used any example. Your doctor, the real estate agent, your financial advisor, the car salesperson, etc. I call this “the intimidation factor” – I am in the presence of a professional who expects me to follow their expert advice. The trouble is, it’s going to cost me. And I have a few more professionals who are going to be assessing my needs this week. I’m not sure I can afford all of this.
I know I’m not alone in feeling intimidated by the experts and their expectations. When I mention this in seminars or coaching, I hear many of you feel this way. So what do we do?
Begin by expecting to feel intimidated. That’s okay, it’s simply a reaction to being faced by someone who knows more than we do about what they are talking about. But intimidation does not equal authority. They can simply recommend the action. We have the power to say yes or no.
Don’t let expertise and expectation equal intimidation. Take back the power you rightly have. Politely say “thanks for your input, I’ll get back to you”. Then, take a deep breath and move on.
Now, about that framus? Will you get it fixed?
© Brian F. Reynolds BFRspace 2014