Exclusivity….just think about the word for a moment, say it to yourself out loud. It sounds good right? I think exclusivity is good, but only when it fits. Whether it is in business, or in a relationship, the process of exclusivity is most beneficial when all parties involved are on the same page- communication is essential. Not just any communication, but good and effective communication. Problems occur when we assume what another party is thinking. When working with a business, the terms of time demands on a particular consultant are laid out in a formulated business plan. One could assume that any additional hours in a workweek not accounted for could be used to work with a competing business. This is the reason why we should assume nothing, and make every aspect of a consulting practice translucent. If this is a healthy component to ethical consulting, shouldn’t it be a healthy part of life? Imagine if relationships were more clearly laid out like business plans, although this may be boring, and a lot less for people to gossip, and talk about, both parties would clearly be on the same page. I am by no means suggesting that people write up business plans for their relationships, or potential relationships (there is surly no better way to scare off a potential partner). What I am suggesting is simple, although way easier said then done, be open and honest with the people in your life, even if it is difficult for you to communicate what you want to, at least try. Mutual understanding can solve many conflicts. So whether you are creating a business proposal, or are beginning or trying to clarify a personal relationship, do your part to make sure both parties are on the same page.