Are You a Grumbler? Keep It Up—It Is an Advantage!
M&M culture: Are you also getting tired of always having to wear the “yes hat”? The good news is that you don’t have to wear that hat any longer. Have you experienced people asking you to be a yes-man or yes-woman? You have probably tried working with yes processes, where you must be positive and are not allowed to scrutinize or reject an idea when it is presented. Often, the rule is that you are not permitted to say “no” and “but.” In other words, you are forced to be positive and obliging. It is a sympathetic idea, but does it work in the real world? The people who came up with the idea probably thought that more ideas would lead to more opportunities, and because nobody can say no, the employees would not be afraid to present their ideas, hence making them more creative. I have experienced this at brainstorming sessions and in business development projects. Many companies have adopted various brainstorming tools that are used to generate (many) ideas in a short time frame or as a tool to support an innovation process. It is often a requirement for the participants to be very positive in these processes.
Joy dictatorship Last week, I visited Norway, where I bumped into Eva Grinde, who works as a journalist for a business newspaper. She has written about how we should do away with the “yes hysteria.” She mentions that we are subject to a “joy dictatorship.” I found her very inspiring, and I would like to share her thoughts with you. Among other things, Eva states that this “joy dictatorship” can quickly become as oppressive as “management by fear,” where the boss often is an authoritarian, an almost militaristic and psychopathic person who manages the employees using threats and fear. Roughly speaking, you have three options:
You can decide that everybody must say “yes” and accept all ideas. You can decide to stick with your “we always find at least five errors” culture. You can ask everybody to be dedicated and sincere.
Innovation doesn’t come from positive environments
Blog from Soulaima Gourani