requires drawing a line in the sand that the audience acknowledges, if not agrees with.
You could say that Blue should ask a more specific question or that Magenta should take a moment to think about why they’re being asked this question… and I’d agree to both arguments, but the fact remains that there are plenty of status updates that don’t fulfill their role in informing decisions.
A good answer, one that feeds into forward momentum, has these three elements:
- How is the progress, in comparison to what was expected?
- Any potential risks ahead?
- Any interesting discoveries to share?
It is usually…
- A throwaway segue, as they figure out how to formulate some kind of request
- Another way of asking, how are you? with varying degrees of interest in your answer
and I find it a tricky one to answer.
Here, the client isn’t interested in the actual difficulties of the task. She wants to know when she can have it and how much it’s going to cost — with just enough information on our proposed approach, so she can be confident that it will be delivered.