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Speaking Client: Explaining Tech Stuff to Non-Tech People

Jim True
April 21, 2017

Speaking Client: Explaining Tech Stuff to Non-Tech People

This talk will cover the necessary skills to communicate complicated subjects to non-technical people. We'll discuss the Communication Toolkit, the stages of the Project Lifecycle and Scope Creep.

Jim True

April 21, 2017

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  1. Speaking Client:
 Explaining Technical Stuff to
 Non-Technical People Introduction to

    Communication Skills,
 the Project Lifecycle & Scope Creep
  2. They decide to drop in on the Earth to see

    if they can find any intelligent species to help
  3. They decide to start their search in the North American

    province, the Nation’s Capitol, Washington DC
  4. Be Happy To, but I’m teaching a class on Talking

    Tech Stuff to Non-Tech People. Think you can assist me?
  5. YES! We’d love to! 
 Growing a new engine will

    take a month minimum.
 Let’s start by cleaning up this “screen clutter”
 Toolkit • Context • Empathy / Perspective •

    Common Ground • Comparisons & Analogies • Clarify by Asking Questions
  7. Context Matters! Does this mean what I think it means?

    And it can mean different things depending on the ‘context’ in which I’m using them.
  8. Perspective & Empathy You can’t know how hard something is

    until you walk a mile in someone else’s shoes. You also can’t explain something if you don’t try to see it from their perspective.
  9. Common Ground Speak at the SAME Level Don’t speak down

    to someone (insults their intelligence or ability to understand) & Don’t Speak over their heads. Avoid Jargon, Acronyms and words that have multiple meanings (context!)
  10. Make Comparisons with Analogy It’s much easier to explain something

    if you can give someone a more common frame of reference that ‘works’ the same way. Find analogies with your audience/client and use them!
  11. Clarify by Asking Questions Ask the person, often, if they’re

    following what you’re explaining or providing what you expect. Have them explain the problem back to you, so you can clarify they understood what you communicated.
  12. The PROJECT Lifecycle Everything that takes time to complete is

    a Project. Anything you want to manage, has these same steps:
 ‣ Discovery ‣ Design ‣ Develop ‣ Delivery ‣ Deploy
  13. DISCOVERY “Is what you say you want what you really

    want and do you know what I mean when I say what I want?” DEFINE what the project is expected to accomplish. Build Requirements, create the DEFINITION of the project.
  14. DESIGN Make a mockup, a drawing, a demo, or something

    that doesn’t take too much effort to give a visual/sensory/tangible representation of what the client wants. Can be called the REFINE stage, because changes help clarify the DEFINITION.
  15. DEVELOP Put all the time and effort in Discovery and

    Design to actually CREATE what the project requires. Also known as the BUILD phase, because at this point, you can’t go back without destroying.
  16. DELIVERY Provide the finished project to the client in a

    way that they can ‘test’ and ‘kick the tires’. Project can be tested, investigated for “little” changes/fixes/bugs. Client will make a list of changes from actually using the product. This is the PUNCH LIST.
  17. DEPLOY “Putting the baby out into the world and seeing

    if it floats.” This is also, usually, when ownership changes hands of the project to the requestor.

    Steps/Stages in
 Project Lifecycle Milestone Dates Payments Due
  19. SCOPE CREEP DESIGN DEVELOP DELIVER Changes in Scope made After

    Discovery, mean the project may have to jump back to the prior milestone or Start Over from scratch.

    make changes the closer to the end of the project as well. $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $
  21. DISCOVERY is CRITICAL This is why you spend the necessary

    time in the Discovery Phase. It will always cost more resources & time to change a project after it leaves Discovery.
  22. Speaking of Discovery The book "Start With The Why" outlines

    how you achieve more by focusing on the underlying reasons why people do what they do. In WordPress development discovery, using the principles outlined in the book, we can turn a small request into a much larger one by figuring out the business problems associated with the request, and proposing a larger solution which resolves the underlying problems. “Start with the Why, Leave with a Bigger Check” Thursday, June 1, @ 6:30pm
 Iron Yard, St Pete
  23. Tampa Bay WordPress Meetups Monthly in St Pete @ Iron

 1st Thursdays every Month http://tampabaywp.org | @tampabaywp Slack Chat | Facebook Group | Meetup