May 31, 2015

Socialise the idea


Introducing new ideas is hard.

By the time any company knows how to do anything, it has established working practices and vested interests. A new way means a new practice and potential offence to anyone associated with the old model. That may not be right, it’s just the reality.

One loosener that makes every step just that little bit easier: socialise the idea before it’s real.

Let people know what you’re thinking, see how they react. Ask for feedback, to contribute, to improve the thinking. Assuming you pay attention, the idea will wither and die or grow stronger – either way you win. On the way, all those vested interests become reinvested in the improvements they’ve created.

In other words, buy-in.

Not because of some clever change-management slight of hand that forces people down blind alleys, but through a genuine desire to do what’s right, and do it right.

Bring your people to the party and introduce your ideas to theirs.

Skippy strategy: Don’t wait for a big presentation. At the coffee shop, anyplace: “I have this idea … what do you think?” “How would it be if …?” “What if we …?”