Is Someone Shooting Down Your Ideas?

September 4, 2011 by
Filed under: Leadership, Positive Attitude, Relationships 

ShootingDownIdeas A 300x212 Is Someone Shooting Down Your Ideas?Beware of the four gallingly com­mon strate­gies that peo­ple use to shoot down a person’s ideas. These tac­tics are all the more com­mon against a per­son who’s been iden­ti­fied as a leader within their organization…but why?  In the world we’re in, there are many peo­ple who unfor­tu­nately don’t like to think about how to solve a par­tic­u­lar issue. They’d rather do what is prob­a­bly the sim­plest thing a per­son can do.  Point out what may be wrong with an idea with­out giv­ing an alter­nate solu­tion for the prob­lem the idea is attempt­ing to address. I’m sure you’ve prob­a­bly never wit­nessed such a scenario.

I always think back to the first time I read about an inter­view with the great states­man Dr. Albert Schweitzer where he was asked the ques­tion of what’s wrong with men today. His answer, “Men sim­ply don’t think.”  (Note: My last two sen­tences where not meant to give a fem­i­nist any extra fod­der against men out there, the answer was given by a famous per­son who hap­pened to be a man as well.8-) )

The four strate­gies that I’ve seen peo­ple often use to shoot down a person’s ideas are:

(1)    Death by delay

(2)    Con­fu­sion

(3)    Fear Mongering

(4)    Ridicule

These four types of “attacks” on a person’s ideas are often done through a cou­ple of dozen ques­tions, com­ments, and/or argu­ments. Any one of these ques­tions can cause an unsus­pect­ing per­son to cave in and give up on their idea.

  1. We tried that before and it didn’t work (<– this one is one of my per­sonal favorites).
  2. No one else does this, why should we try it really.
  3. You can’t have it both ways.
  4. Ah! What about THIS? [“this” being a wor­ri­some thing that the pro­posers know noth­ing about and the attack­ers keep secret until just the right moment].
  5. Good idea, but the tim­ing is all wrong.
  6. It’s too much work to do this.
  7. It won’t work here. We have a unique situation.
  8. It puts us on a slip­pery slope.
  9. We sim­ply can’t afford this. / It’s just too expensive.
  10. You’ll never con­vince enough people.
  11. You’re aban­don­ing our core values.
  12. It’s too sim­plis­tic to work. / It sounds too simple.
  13. Sounds like [some­thing hor­ri­ble] to me!
  14. Peo­ple have too many con­cerns to do that.
  15. It’s too dif­fi­cult to understand.
  16. You have a chicken and egg prob­lem here.
  17. Your pro­posal doesn’t go far enough/your pro­posal goes too far.
  18. We’re sim­ply not equipped to do this.
  19. Money [or some other prob­lem a pro­posal does not address] is the real issue here.
  20. You’re exag­ger­at­ing the problem.
  21. You imply that we’ve been failing!
  22. What’s the hid­den agenda here?
  23. What about this, and that, and this, and that…?
  24. We’ve been so suc­cess­ful. Why should we change? (if it’s not bro­ken, why fix it?)

What’s Your Response?

One of the more com­mon responses peo­ple often do to is often the first thing they should not it they want to suc­ceed with their idea. All too often peo­ple push out the ‘trou­ble­mak­ers’. Why do that? Here is a golden oppor­tu­nity. Why not just let them in and treat them with respect. Allow them to always be part of the solu­tion. Lis­ten to their con­cerns and crit­i­cism. The oppo­site of respect in that sit­u­a­tion is shoot­ing back. If you start shoot­ing back at a per­son who is crit­i­ciz­ing you, oth­ers will see that you are shoot­ing at them and may become sym­pa­thetic to the other per­son even if his attack wasn’t fair!

Another type of response that often back­fires is drown­ing a per­son in a half-hour’s worth of evi­dence. Drilling them basi­cally into the ground with infor­ma­tion as to why your idea is a good one that will def­i­nitely work. It’s bet­ter to com­mu­ni­cate in ways that are sim­ple, clear, short and to the point. Research by authors John P. Kot­ter and Lorne A. White­head had shown that the most effec­tive peo­ple, instead of just spray­ing ver­bal bul­lets, respond in a way that is sim­ple, clear and filled with com­mon sense.

Never let it get per­sonal, no mat­ter how much you want to lash out.  Just under­stand that the per­son is really attack­ing the idea, not you. Keep an eye on the entire audi­ence and not just the one critic. It’s very easy to get hung up on the guy who’s attack­ing your idea.

Last Words…

The say­ing that states, “He who laughs last, laughs best!” is not one that I agree with. The phrase that often is more accu­rate to me is, “He who laughs last, doesn’t really need to laugh at all!” He lets his idea prove him right.

When one has an idea, it’s never sim­ply the idea that makes it to be a work­ing idea. One thing is to be able to gen­er­ate an idea by dig­ging up data, ana­lyz­ing it, and putting it together in some form of log­i­cal way. But it’s another thing all together to gain the sup­port one needs in order to get the idea off the ground and working!

Cheers!

Gil

Comments

One Awesome Comment, Add Yours on Is Someone Shooting Down Your Ideas?

  1. Jussica67 on Sat, 25th Jan 2014 10:35 am
  2. “I think this arti­cle con­tains huge valu­able infor­ma­tion about mort­gage. This arti­cle can help by pre­vent­ing risk.
    Truly its a nice job. Thank you for shar­ing with us. “
    gun show florida

    Like or Dis­like: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

Tell me what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!





*

CommentLuv badge

Notify via Email Only if someone replies to My Comment

Spam Protection by WP-SpamFree

This blog uses premium CommentLuv which allows you to put your keywords with your name if you have had 3 approved comments. Use your real name and then @ your keywords (maximum of 3)
  • Add to Technorati Favorites
  • Google FriendsConnect

  • Sponsors

Rss Feed Tweeter button Facebook button Technorati button Reddit button Myspace button Linkedin button Webonews button Delicious button Digg button Flickr button Stumbleupon button Newsvine button Youtube button