Change takes new ideas. Uncomfortable, audacious, unprecedented new ideas. Unfortunately, sometimes our big new ideas aren’t always welcome.
There are companies with a limited appetite for change, resisting new ideas — even for a better way of doing things. But before you blame your environment for blocking any forward motion, think about whether you might be getting in your own way.
Explore how much is in your control. There are certain go-to behaviors that will work against you in any environment, behaviors that can create obstacles in building interest or momentum around your ideas, especially if you need others to help make it happen. Avoiding these pitfalls will help you accelerate your next great idea.
So, do any of these eight idea-killing habits look familiar?
1. Do you forget the why, or the real impact your idea will have?
If you want others to change, the ultimate impact has to be clear. Change can be hard for all of us, even if we wanted it. Keep going back to the reason why the change matters — we can help our customers be healthier, we will become a trusted community partner, we can work smarter and faster.
2. Do you miss the connection to business results?
This goes hand in hand with the why. A lot of ideas go straight to the graveyard because of this miss. Yes, our customers might like the option of new products, but what is it going to take to create them? What is the ultimate business impact? There needs to be a basic return on investment to be sure your intention has been translated beyond just an idea.
3. Do you give up too easily?
Changes rarely happen that easily, or it would have been done already. Explore other possible options and never give up.
4. Do you lecture?
If you are the only one talking, there is a good chance you aren’t at maximum effectiveness on creating interest in your idea. Smart change activators ask questions and listen. They collaborate and involve others, even if they are sure they have the answers. They find ways to work together.
5. Do you skip experimentation?
You can’t just beeline to the finish line, blinders up.You might miss something on the sidelines. If you are taking on a new change that hasn’t been done before, experiment. Try to see what works and what doesn’t. And adjust. Experimentation is a great way to reveal answers to others through their own observations. They become invested in your idea, too, because they are part of it.
6. Do you take lack of interest personally?
Those who create a successful new business or change how their team works together set their ego aside. You’ll get ignored, challenged, questioned — the applause will be in short supply. Keep your eye on the impact you hope to have more than what others think of you.
7. Do you look down on those who don’t get it?
Remember that we all see the world differently. Respect those around you.
8. Do you overdo it?
Successful entrepreneurs and leaders are always thinking and asking, What if? But they are able to focus and spend energy on the ideas with real impact.
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