St Louis to Chicago

by Larry Emmott on December 9, 2009

in General

I wrote this for my e-mail newsletter and have recieved a lot of feedback along the lines of, “yeah what a great analogy; that is just what I see”…or something to that effect. So, by popular demand here it is. :-)

 St. Louis to Chicago

Jag2Imagine someone, perhaps a dentist, decides to take a car trip from St. Louis to Chicago. He buys a car gets some basic instruction from the salesman on how to drive and then waits for the car to take him to Chicago.

This person, perhaps a dentist, does not get any real driving lessons and never gets any hands on training. The person doesn’t know which roads go to Chicago and doesn’t have a map. He doesn’t decide on a time to leave, who might go with him or where he could get some gas on the way. He just knows he wants to get to Chicago and he has heard that a car will get him there.

After several weeks or months he is still in St Louis, the car has not taken him to Chicago. Frustrated he calls the salesman, demands a refund and goes online to “cartown” to complain about how this car is lousy technology that doesn’t work.

Of course this story is ridiculous. But it illustrates what seems to happen far too often with dentists buying technology. It is not the “stuff” but the “solution”.

Back to the story it is not just the “stuff”, in this case the car that will get the person to his destination (or goal). It is also the “solution”; when to leave, which roads to take and where to get some gas. Without the “solution” the “stuff” won’t deliver on the goal.

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