Stop poking holes in everything. There are some good ideas out there and you might want to listen to a few. You’re not the only one who can come up with solutions to the problem. No idea is perfect. If you’re going to play Devils Advocate, make sure you’re also offering solutions to the problems you see with the ideas floating around the room. And make sure you give credit where it’s due!
Some people are good at being inspired and seeing beyond the problem. They can come up with unique ideas and visual solutions that you may not be able to see. But if you keep poking holes at what they have to offer, they’re going to become discouraged and unappreciated. You’ll shut them down entirely and they’ll start to feel as though they don’t want to help you at all.
It’s ok to play Devils Advocate when you’re brainstorming. But would it hurt you to say “that’s a good idea, how can we over come this issue or that problem”. You don’t have to start every sentence with “That won’t work”.
Everyone likes to feel as though they are being listened to and have a sense of value. They may not have your expertise, but through their fresh eyes of learning you may discover something you only assumed through years of doing the same thing every day. That kind of experience creates habits that keep you from looking at new things and fresh ideas. Things change. And there maybe something new that inexperienced beginner knows, that you don’t know.
Everyone in life comes into situations with varying levels of understanding. Old school might be a good thing most of the time, but new school has some innovations that can make things easier, faster, better and more relevant. Don’t dismiss anyone simply because you think you know it all. Chances are you don’t and you maybe pushing away the best idea that’s hit your desk in years!
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