Love at first sight. Can it really happen?

I know this is going to sound like Shallow Hal but the first thing that attracted me was appearance. Really slim. Modern, minimalist styling. Just had to have it. To boost productivity, of course.

Old Flame: I had a fairly good relationship with my older one (a Blackberry). But it was time to move on. You know the feeling when the initial lust has waned and the relationship survives on utility value. Comfortable, but not exciting.

And, so it begins: Finding a new phone to love was going to be easy, right? I had already spied the mystical iPhone 4. Here’s a few statistics to digest. There are exactly 2, 817, 311 people in Ireland actively looking for the iPhone 4. Secondly, as there are about 23 of them released each week, you have to get on a list. Take your turn in an orderly queue. Then when that list gets shredded, you get on the end of a new list. You flirt with the person in the 02 store. You offer various inducements in a roundabout way to avoid being arrested. You come up with legitimate reasons why you should be bumped into pole position (“My Granny is just finishing her 3rd tour of duty in Afghanistan. I’m hoping to meet her when she is home for one night’s R&R. For some strange reason she can only receive texts sent from an iPhone 4”).

Yes, Yes: Roll the clock forward. I got my hands on one! Eat your heart out. All that queuing. All those white lies. History. It’s iPhone 4 envy time. A black beauty that turns others green. Gloat while lesser mortals inwardly burn (“Who does he know that I don’t?”).

Productivity Revisited: As you read this I am downloading new applications, sorting out music to use during Executive Workshops and editing great photos of Max, my dog. I’ve all the toys now. Desktops, laptops, phones. I am e-mailed, linked-in, facebooked, blogged-up and tweeted. At some point I am even going to do real work with this stuff.

Playing Hard-to-Get: All I need now is to figure out how to make management consulting as attractive as that damned iPhone. Must be something to do with supply and demand. I vaguely remember it from economics class (should have paid more attention). Perhaps become standoffish and that will generate an avalanche of interest.

Ok, here’s the deal. Nobody contact me till after May 2012. Until then, I am fully booked. Zero chance of getting even 10 minutes of face-to-face time. Now, just hang around until that phone starts hopping with incoming!

The general consensus is that the consulting market is off by circa 60% from its peak in 2006. So, if you are a consultant and struggling a bit, don’t worry. Maybe use some of that free time to skill up on new tools. It may not seem 100% productive, but it has two upsides. Firstly, it’s good fun – learning is always enjoyable. Secondly, good things happen when you are positively distracted. The Tandem Consulting team have just won a major management development contract which is great. Staying upbeat during quiet times helps to radiate self confidence which always helps in selling! Keep on the up and up. This too will pass!

Paul Mooney

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About Tandem Consulting

Paul Mooney holds a Ph.D. and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Industrial Sociology from Trinity College, along with a National Diploma in Industrial Relations (NCI). He has a post-Graduate Diploma and a Masters in Coaching from UCD. Paul, a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, is widely recognised as an expert on organisation and individual change. He began his working life as a butcher in Dublin before moving into production management. He subsequently held a number of human resource positions in Ireland and Asia - with General Electric and Sterling Drug. Between 2007 and 2010, Paul held the position of President, National College of Ireland. Paul is currently Managing Partner of Tandem Consulting, a team of senior OD and change specialists. He has run consulting assignments in 20+ countries and is the author of 12 books. Areas of expertise include: • Organisational Development/Change & conflict resolution • Leadership Development/Executive Coaching • Human Resource Management/employee engagement
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