The secret to understanding your client and fellow human

The main goal of my gap season is to introduce new ideas, conversations, and concepts from around the WordPress community.

Today, I’m proud to have had the opportunity to share this episode with Morten Rand-Hendriksen, Senior Staff Instructor at LinkedIn Learning and

The show


If you don’t follow Morten, you probably should follow him on Twitter. Like, right now, I’ll wait…

See, I’ve followed him for a while, exchanging an occasional tweet here and there, but we never had a “real” conversation before. When I thought about introducing new views to the show, he was the first person that came to mind. I wanted someone with a strong opinion, who would give us a new angle to think about — not just another tool or tactic.

When I say, he delivered on this promise, is an understatement. I could have titled this episode: “How to 10x your closing rates” or “Land $50k projects like a fighter pilot” but that, that would be doing the content an injustice.

What we have in this episode is like finding that loose strand in your favorite sweater, and when you pull it, the whole thing becomes unraveled. That single thread of fabric that is the link to the entire garment. Understanding how another person views your ideas, your work, is the key to anything.

The key to a healthy relationship, the key to landing a project, the key to getting your voice heard in a political movement — anything.

It’s such an oversight, for most of us. Why doesn’t the client like our design, or, why don’t they understand how to use WordPress — it’s right there! If you’ve found yourself thinking that, or have a tough time getting your message across, this is the episode for you.

The links


7 responses to “The secret to understanding your client and fellow human”

  1. I’ve been enjoying NPR’s How I Built This podcast. At first I was put off because like every other Startup porn podcast, it’s extreme survivor bias. But I”m finding a few little gems.

    One related here was Sara Blakely talking about starting Spanx. She told no one about the idea, because she didn’t want the reality check. People would’ve given her advice (which most of us would consider a good thing), or would’ve felt their own insecurity and told her she couldn’t do it.

    The WordPress ecosystem is huge, so it’s full of all kinds of people, everyone with their own issues and motivations. It’s amazing in how much we all share and are involved, but sometimes maybe we need to just keep it to ourselves and do the work without sharing everything?

    1. Couldn’t have said it better, Corey. For me, it’s those darned transparency reports. On one hand they are encouraging, but more often than not, make me feel less successful in my endeavors. I do really like that little gem of staying quiet with your idea — smart move. Even though you (she) might keep on no matter what people say, the negative remarks can slowly chip away, regardless.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      1. I think it comes down to the same old cliche, “know thyself”, and I might add the caveat, “know thyself today”. Some people thrive on feedback, good or bad. Some people struggle with the drive. And sometimes that can vary day to day. It all takes a lot of self-awareness.

  2. Hi Matt,

    While this might sound kiss ass, you were the first WP podcast I listened to early on so, please keep doing what you do!

    1. Thanks for the encouragement and for spending the time here, Ginger!

  3. Amazing podcast Matt, your podcast is very professional and full of great content.

    Nice to see you have had both of my favorite teachers Morten and Curtis McHale, I was extremely lucky to have both of these two to learn from in college.

    The tree example is really good and it’s even better in person. When Morten did it in class you can really see how different everyone thinks.

    I agree with Morten on all points , I also find this challenge of communication even harder over email or some sort of text conversation because a lot is missed and can be mistaken and assumed.

    1. Thanks, Dave! I’m lucky to have them appear here, they both bring tremendous value to our work.

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