The adventures of an analog engineer and digital storyteller who studies emerging networks and their impact on the great game of business.
Aug 25, 2008

Within a few short months, The United States will choose a new President. And not long after that, the President will choose his Cabinet — close advisers who’ll help him make important decisions.

And that got me to thinking. Who’s in YOUR Cabinet?

  • Who have you chosen to help you make decisions?
  • What do you expect out of your Cabinet? Facts? Opinions?
  • Are Cabinet members acquaintances or do they need to be friends?
  • What did each member do to gain your trust? Proven track record? Best out of five?:-)
  • And lastly: Is it possible for a vendor, someone who is trying to sell you something, to become a trusted member of your Cabinet?

I believe that every source is credible, if we know where they are coming from. If a company is writing about their products and services, of course their opinion will be biased. But that doesn’t negate everything that they say! Instead, it’s buyer beware. It’s important for a consumer to take transparently-biased information with a grain of salt, and to seek other sources. The onus of credibility falls on me, because ultimately, I am making the decision.

As I think through my list of trusted advisers, I see that my Cabinet is filled with friends, family and acquaintances — some who I only “know” through New Media. For example, I have a presentation coach by the name of Garr Reynolds. Oh, I’ve never met Garr in person, but I’ve bought his book, I read his blog, and I look to him to sharpen my presentations skills. Garr is a member of my Cabinet, and therefore, I take his recommendations just as seriously as I do with my other Cabinet members.

In a blog posting last week, Garr recommended that I purchase a new presentation book called: Slide:ology, by Nancy Duarte. Does it matter that this book was written by his friend? Perhaps. Does it matter that he’s selling it through his affiliate program with Amazon? Possibly. Did I still buy the book? Yup.

As a matter of fact, I bought two — one to give away. Why? Because I’ve found that every time I listen to his advice, my presentations get better. I balanced his biases with the results I’ve gotten in the past from taking his advice and I made a decision.

I’m halfway through Nancy’s book and have found it more amazing than I had imagined. My Cabinet has come through for me once again.

So who’s in your Cabinet?

Filed under: Audience is an Asset
  • Jeremy Vaught

    Nice! I like this. Got me thinking who is in mine. And more importantly, who is on the outskirts that either need to be pushed out, or pulled in.

    Very interesting indeed.

  • Ken Wetherell

    Ron, there you go again — proving to be a very valuable member of my Cabinet! Thanks.

    Working at a company that almost thinks in PowerPoint, your recommendation here (i.e. your shared positive experience) will be valuable to me.