The Geek Therapy Quickstart Guide

Use this short guide to quickly start applying Geek Therapy in your work. Later, revisit this guide often to refresh your memory.

Step One: Ask

Ask your client about their favorite movies, books, games, songs, hobbies, foods, or anything else they might care about. If they don’t want to or can’t think of an answer, ask them about something they know more about than anyone else they know, or what they are better at than anyone else they know. The answer is what we’ll refer to as their affinity.

Step Two: Accept and Embrace

Unless there is an immediate safety concern, do not dismiss, criticize, or belittle the affinity. Embrace the affinity as a valid topic for conversation.

Step Three: Be Curious

Show your client that it matters to you that their affinity matters to them by asking more questions about it. If you are familiar with the particular affinity, ask specific questions that show that you know something about it. If you are unfamiliar with the affinity, ask general questions that can help you learn more.

Step Four: Listen

Allow your client to speak freely about the affinity. The more they care about it, the more they’ll have to say. Listen for words describing how the affinity makes them feel or how other people react to it. Listen for personal relationships and how they relate to the affinity.

Step Five: Connect

Using what you’ve learned so far, attempt to connect something the client shared about the affinity with the reason why you are meeting. If you are unable to make a connection, address the reason why you are meeting directly. The client may be less resistant now if some trust and rapport has developed through steps 1-4.

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