Why You Should Stop Saying ‘No’ All the Time
Stop saying “no” – it’s harming your business.
Think about this one honesty: Do you often reject ideas from your team? Or are you more often then not telling them what they’re doing wrong? You may be cutting yourself off from the benefit of their ideas – or more importantly – their enthusiasm.
The New York Times is carrying an illuminating piece about the power of approaching leadership positively. Specifically, the effect of not constantly receiving ideas with “no” as a response.
One could extrapolate that to mean – be receptive to creativity and new ideas, or even just other ideas.
There is a difference, however, between surviving and thriving. Because our survival is no longer under constant threat, many more of us have the opportunity to focus on thriving. The problem with “no” as a starting place is that it polarizes, prompts defensiveness and shuts down innovation, collaboration and connection.
Partly, it’s a primitive survival-of-the-fittest instinct. If someone else suggests an idea and your response is an affirming “Yes,” or even “Yes and,” then she may get credit and you may not. But defending our own value by diminishing the value of others eventually ends up costing us — and not just because it antagonizes others.
It’s an interesting notion, not least because it’s obviously true in many respects, but it could set up some challenges for when you do, in fact, need to say “no”.
What’s your approach?