In my recent blog The Walking Notebook, I spoke about the idea of taking notes on almost everything. Evernote has become my version of a walking notebook, because outside of my normal notebook I use it for most of my miscellaneous notes and questions. I recently started asking my friends the question, “Who is credible to give advice?” And after a couple of weeks, I have a breakthrough to my question. To explain my discovery, I am going to use a Travel Agent and a Tour Guide as examples.
A travel agent’s role is mainly to book your flights, accommodation and tours for where you are going. Travel agents normally sort out the admin and paper work of your travel. At times travel agents have never been to where you want to go, but they are responsible for selling the holiday package you desire. On the other hand, a tour guide is there to be with you when exploring a new city/town. Tour Guides remember landmarks and understand the history of destinations; they can even answer whatever question you might while on tour with them. The reality is that you are less likely to get lost when you are with a tour guide than when you are with a travel agent. You get the idea?
Let us take it further into our age of technology and information overload, how do we decide on whose advice to take when there is so much content being released on the internet? Our first reference can be asking ourselves, “Is this person a tour guide or a travel agent in this topic? I wanted to share a few points from a Leadership DVD that I have been watching, these points highlight the reasons why followers listen to leaders. I took it a bit further and started using it as a metric for deciding whether or not I am going to watch a video on YouTube or listen to that podcast, I even look for these pointers when I buy a book.
The reason why Followers listen to Leaders:
*Sacrifice- People listen because of what you have suffered.
*Insight- People listen because of what you know.
*Experience- People listen because of what you have achieved
*Character- People listen because of your integrity.
*Relevance- People listen because you identify with their needs.John C Maxwell, Becoming a Person of Influence.
These points are not complex and we can think about them when we are searching for people to give us advice. “What has the person suffered? What does this person know? What has this person achieved? Does this person have integrity? Does this person meet my needs?” This is what I think about when I am looking for answers or advice.
I have been working hard at trying to develop a style of writing more like that of a tour guide. I would honestly be the worst person to ask about how to fly a plane or how make a million, because those are areas I have no experience in at all. You can certainly ask me about Leadership, Self-Development, Intellectualism and Self-Management to name a few. These are the few topics I have had first-hand experience over the years.
I wrote this blog so that we do not become shallow people that just take advice from every moving lip or readable text. My desire is that people would have the power to decide whether or not they want a Tour Guide or a Travel Agent. This is the paradox of advice and deciding where to take it from.
Thank you once again for reading. If you would like to share any comment please feel free to do so below. Don’t forget to like this post and share it with a few people.