Make Meetings Matter

Articles by Charlie Hawkins

Idea-Busters vs. Idea-Builders

by Charlie Hawkins, MBA


Here are some constructive ways to respond to ideas.

It's all in the way you say it!
  Idea busters vs. idea builders

  Idea-Busters  vs.  Idea-Builders
  Instead of busting an idea by saying... Build it with language, such as...
1.  It just doesn't grab me Tell me more
2.  We tried that before and it didn't work What's different now that might make it work
3.  Who's going to do it Here's a way to do it
4.  It's been done to death Let's do it better (or differently)
5.  We can't afford that Let's figure out a way to pay for it
6.  Don't fight the system Let's change the system
7.  We've never done anything like that ...until now
8.  Yes...but Yes...and
9.  The partners (board) will never buy it How can we sell it to the partners (board)
10.  That's really off the wall That's really on the ball
11.  Oh?? Yes! Let's try it.
12.  I like my idea better Let's combine ideas and see how that works
13.  That won't work How can we make it work
14.  The timing isn't right Let's work out the best timing
15.  That only solves half the problem Let's isolate what works & look at concerns
16.  Good in theory, but let's be practical Great! Let's figure out how to make it work
17.  Great idea, but not for us Great idea–how can we make it work for us
18.  Where'd you get that idea? Bravo!
19.  It'll never work (fly, sell) How can we make it work (fly)
20.  What will the board (committee) say Let's make sure we address the board's (committee's) concerns
21.  I don't agree I agree with (x and y) and need help in understanding (z)
22.  I have a better idea... Building on your idea...
23.  It doesn't solve the problem Let's connect this back to the problem
24.  (Any expression, body language or words that judge or negate an idea initially) (Be silent...let the idea or thought sink in...look for the "good," then respond)

Few ideas are perfect at first ...give yourself and others permission to be approximately right.
Build ideas...and watch them grow into solutions. Credit others where it is due.

Make Meetings Matter - book by Charlie Hawkins

About the Author

Charlie Hawkins facilitates business round tables, strategic planning retreats and idea generation sessions for businesses and nonprofit organizations who want to improve their results. He is the author of Make Meetings Matter, a comprehensive resource for anyone who wants to plan and facilitate more effective meetings.

Charlie Hawkins

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