The parable of six blind men teaches a lot about perspective.
Six blind guys who have never seen an elephant before and have no idea what one is or looks like walk up to an elephant at a different spot.
The first blind guy touches the side of the elephant and declares, “This is like a wall!”
Another guy touches the tail and says, “No! This is like a rope!”
The next guy touches the trunk and declares, “This is like a snake!”
Our next guy grabs the tusk and says, “This is like a spear!”
Our fifth fellow touches the ear and says, “This is like a fan!”
And, finally, our sixth blind gentleman touches a leg and says, “This is like a tree trunk!”
You know what’s the most interesting? They all think they are a 100% right. And who can blame them? They’re all blinded by their own perspective, which to be fair, is partially true.
Ironically, people with perfect or near-perfect vision are also blinded by their own perspective. Refusing to think from the other person’s perspective.
I walked into a conference a few months back and bumped into this vibrant young man who was oozing with self-confidence. We struck up a conversation and before the first minute was over I came to know that he’s a “Digital Marketer” and is working a major company that’s working on some fancy app. Impressive.
He then went on to share his displeasure about the profession and wondered why traditional marketers are preferred over someone like him to be the CMO. He felt that the traditionalists were so outdated and lack the technical finesse to be in leadership.
That’s a valid point. But I consider myself a “traditional marketer” who’s gone savvy. My thoughts on Content Marketing have derived from both traditional and modern-day marketing trends and principles. The traditional made the modern. And the modern will be traditional tomorrow.
He’s correct. And I’m sure I have a point too. But banishing marketers (traditional or modern) doesn’t answer the marketing challenges that businesses face. You wouldn’t call Eben Pagan a pseudo-marketer. Would you? Would you say Seth Godin is a traditional marketer and is thus outdated?
I guess you got the point.
Next time you’re in a discussion/debate/argument, just know that you’re not smart enough to be 100% right. And the other person isn’t stupid enough to be 100% wrong.
Instead, take a step back and understand the other person’s perspective. Where is this coming from? What makes them think that way? What’s important for them in this discussion?
It’s surprisingly easier to converse and get your point across once you have a deeper understanding of the other person’s perspective. Even if it’s the complete opposite of your point of view.