Thoughts on ways to improve the management of professional services firms

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

If you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail

Back in May in Clients are their own worst enemies, I returned to one of my recurrent themes on this blog, the need for professionals to educate clients. In the period since, there has been an interesting discussion in other fora on issues associated with cognitive dissonance and the law.

The latest post in this discussion is Legal Eagle's The Art of Law. The post includes links to earlier posts, including two I wrote. In the comments Jacques Chester made a very interesting comment @4. It begins: Here in software-land we often quote the old saying that “if all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail”.

Jacques' comment drives to the heart of the point that own professional backgrounds dictate the way we see and respond to client problems even if that way is not in fact appropriate. I mention this now because I want to come back to Jacques' points in the context of improving professional practice in a general sense.



Jacques Chester said...

I've since learned that the French have a punning name for the phenomenon of professional narrowsightedness: déformation professionnelle.

Jim Belshaw said...

Love it, Jacques!