How to say “yes” and “no” – part two

Another twist of the same problem. When I read about it in the “12 soft skills”, I’ve realized I was “always” doing things that way, but never though about why I choose to act this way.

The situation is common and simple. Somebody suggests “let’s do <something>”. And you firmly believe, that this “something” is wrong. What should you do? Especially when a person is your manager.

The book says: avoid saying “no”. And that’s true. When you say”no, we can’t do this”, it’s a blocker. A person, with whom you talk, won’t even listen for your “that’s why”, “because”, “what we can do instead”, etc.  So what you need to do, is to find a way to say “yes”.  Something like “I agree with you in principle, but I am not sure we can proceed with this plan right away, because…”  Or: “I believe this is a right approach, especially in the long term, but what to you think about doing <…> right now, and take the path you are suggesting later?

Even if what is suggested, does not make any sense at all, try to find something, for which you can say “yes”, and start from acknowledging agreement. As I say in other circumstances focus on what unite us, rather than what divide us.

This approach can really work miracles!


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