Many of us do it, but we shouldn’t. The ‘it’ here is making the statement “I’m not a technologist…” It’s always followed by a qualifier, such as “…so I cannot really answer your question. I have to check with one of our archictects/developers/managers.” The latter part of the response is fine; it’s often appropriate and necessary.
I have problem with the first part of the response. If you work in the technology industry, you are a technologist. Every person who pitches, markets, sells, supports, implements, and services the technology has an obligation to understand their technology as deeply as they possibly can.
When our customers and prospects take a meeting with us, they are spending their valuable time in order to accelerate their knowledge gathering curve. When we don’t know enough about our products and how they work at the conceptual, design, or architectural level, there is a lost opportunity costs. Clients and prospects are their most receptive to knowledge at the moment we are talking to them.
The more you can share about your technology’s technology, the more you answer your clients’ or prospects’ number one concern: why should I do business with you?
P.S. Forgive me for taking liberties about President’s Nixon’s view of economics in my blog’s title.
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