Why is it important that we talk about feelings?

Because they are the only real markers we have.

You can present uptime statistics, production efficiency, delivery times and numbers of this and that as much as you want. At the end of the day, it is the customer’s feelings that determines if he will continue buying your products or services.

Our emotions, our feelings are the sum of the impressions we value. And our emotions direct our actions. It matters little that you complied 100% with the SLA if the customer doesn’t feel like renewing the contract. You may think it’s unfair, that you did everything you could, or that it is irrational on the customer’s part. But the fact remains, if it doesn’t tickle the customer’s fancy, he will vote with his feet.

This is precisely why it is so important to talk about feelings. Invite the customer to open up. Make it safe to talk about that elusive airy-fairy stuff that women have been babbling on about for eons. Just as you tell the customer straight what you think, just like you open up fully about your emotions, so should you help the customer open up to you. Get underneath each other’s skin. Only then will you be able to figure out what’s really going on.

But a customer’s feelings toward you are usually not conglomerated only from his experience with you. He may have had a bad day, a quarrel with his wife or an excellent weekend trip camping with his daughter. They are elusive, these feelings. But to figure out what you can do about his experience with you, you need to get him to talk about it. Only then can you better sift out what emotions he may have specifically toward you.

Management frameworks tend to disregard emotions. Frameworks such as ITIL or PRINCE2 treat them as irrelevant and tries to supplant them with SLAs and the like. Other frameworks, such as Hubbard’s Management Technology treat them as contemptuous… HE&R (Human Emotions and Reactions) is an example of inventing a term to belittle another’s feelings.

All this goes for other relationships as well. The more important the relationship, the more important it is to talk about feelings. If you value the other person, value his or her feelings.

I hold that your feelings are your most important markers in life. It is the zest of living and should be treated with utmost respect. It is what we live for, the reason to enjoy the games we love to play, even the game of life itself.

20 thoughts on “Why is it important that we talk about feelings?

  1. Do you find it (YOUR space, YOUR blog) a safe place to ‘talk about that elusive airy-fairy stuff that women have been bubbling on about for eons?’
    ‘The way to find out is to actually do it.’ (Jonatan)

      1. HaHa, I know that you do! Me too! I was only joking! I used the word ‘safe’ because you used it in the OP. What can be a ‘more secure’ place than which anybody in the world who is reading this blog is invited to join – the Free Flow of Life as a base – and by sharing his/her ‘views and feelings’ here can co-operate in Life’s creations? That’s quite a joy of Freedom! I hereby invite anyone from any ‘field’ and ‘walk’ of life to join! It can happen then that we ‘break the law’ by just doing so without any other ‘method’ used and even a miracle can happen, that this ‘blog’ gets ‘fluid’ and we find ourselves chatting where the ‘stars’ are…..actually, as an addition, I just envisioned a new future of IT right after reading the OP…no details but kind of elastic stuff…but it’s your profession, Geir.

  2. This is the post that really hit home for me! The heart of the Heart stuff! I could say it’s ‘my life’, major part of it. I could write countless stories about its truth. ‘It is the zest of living’ ‘what we live for’…yes and yes! Yes, this is the real stuff of the game of life…this is that shatters ‘masks’, thoughts just evaporate….one starts it, it spreads…for real, not only in the ‘movies’ we love watching. Great you write about it,

  3. Let’s be honest: in this century, “at the end of the day”, the customer’s feelings will depends mostly on the discount you make it to him 🙂

    1. Funny, but true. In my own work, I have a good success keeping customers if I can get them to give me a try. Then later, if they drift off because of price alone, I can usually be patient and they sometimes come back around and when they do they stick better the second time around. Conversely, I have an auto mechanic who gives me excellent mechanical repairs, pretty good service, and fair pricing. There are both cheaper and more expensive mechanics but my feeling is that at the end of the year, I will get the most for my dollar at his shop. I won’t ever try another mechanic unless some circumstance forces me to.

    2. That would often make a major contribution to his feelings toward you. But not always. And the resulting feeling is what determines his actions.

  4. An individual is best advised to keep their emotions to themselves when dealing with any business enterprise which operates within the capitalist model. This is because the sole (and most publicly obfusacted) moral basis upon which a business within this dynamic operates is to maximise profits to shareholders. By encouraging via social manipulation the insertion of this imperative into the human psyche you are delivering tasty morsels as an offering before the altar of Mammon. The more ethical manner of overcoming customer dissatisfaction is to maintain focus on communication at the rational level and, if issues cannot be resolved, to provide the customer with a complete list of opposition products which might better suit their needs.

    I know, I know . . . its far too late for such a plaintive stance as, alas, the approach you are advocating here has been in place for close to a hundred years. But, surely, isn’t it about time such business practises were brought to heel?

    In considering my response to your OP, I recalled the wonderful Adam Curtis documentary series “The Century of the Self” and had a wee chuckle to myself when viewing the introductory narration. Perhaps your friend L Ron Hubbard was right all along . . . it really was those eeeevil psychs ; )

  5. A bit irrelevant, but since you’re talking about feelings, and something just rang in my case: A happy slave is no better than an unhappy one. Actually, I think an unhappy one is a bit closer to his truth –truth being that he is not, basically, a slave.

    1. It seems to me the task of psychology, psychiatry, as well as crap spiritualities including neo-SCN is to convince people that all that matters is to feel good, ‘uptone’ etc regardless of what happens.

      Hey if it is so for someone, he can save money and time and use some drugs. Why bother with all those weird spiritual theories? Make your lives easy. Psychology is here for you.

      1. Spyros: ….he can save money and time and use some drugs. Why bother with all those weird spiritual theories? Make your lives easy. Psychology is here for you.

        Dee: One can even use the F**It Therapy. 🙂

        1. Yes. I also consider I’m meant to survive as the dynamics well. And nice feelings should accompany surviving WELL. If I felt well for committing overts, that would be closer to the psychotic side…you know that like happy clown that happily mutilates bodies in horror movies… 😛

          1. I think feelings can be like a sort of a compass….if you mess a person’s compass up, you can pretty much disorient him with regards to his ethics…

            1. If you swap feelings for logic, then you can control somebody by feeding him information 😉

            2. Yes, I think it’s a higher level of knowing than logic. Logic applies to bodies. A body with a car needs to figure out the fastest way to it’s destination. A spirit wouldn’t need to do that. Yet, as a spirit applies logic to it’s existence can act as a body too. A spirit is not subjected to MEST laws. But by using MEST logic can become more MESTy (in terms of considerations). The Logics in SCN, weren’t in SCN. They were in Dianetics. Dianetics were not addressed to thetans. I find it ‘strange’ (not really) that data evaluation is considered so important in modern SCN. You make one be ‘always-happy’, feed him ‘ethics’, forbid him to get data from outside the sect, and you got him. He’s yours.

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