In the last article, we made the statement that it is not as difficult to get support and funding for a Business Resumption Plan if one employs the “tricks of the trade” used by high-priced consultants to get the executive’s attention and communicate with them in terms they understand. We continue with the details and techniques in Part 2 of this series.
Getting Executive Commitment: How Not to Brief Your Executives
It is a well-known fact that the human attention span is about 90 seconds. In a meeting, if a person does not say something meaningful to the audience in that timeframe, eyes and thoughts start to wander. With executives, this span shortens to about 15 seconds as they have an advantage. They can count on someone else to listen to whatever it was you had to say. If what you present is garbled with unfocused data or confusing technical terms, then you will have lost the value of your presentation because the executive will tune you out.
This brings us to another problem in such a forum. When asking "permission to plan," there are really only three answers from the executive that are possible:
A. YES B. NO C. Let's STUDY this some more
Now which do you suppose is the answer most often given? And why do recovery plans take ten years to complete? It's always option “C” because technical people are not always so good at presenting their needs to management. Sure, technical service persons know exactly what they need, but they go about asking for it all wrong.