The Problem Mindset
Every innovative endeavor poses challenges. When it comes to sharing ideas, the challenge is often in creating a context in which ideas are valued. Unfortunately, the dreaded “yes, but” is a common negative response heard in brainstorming sessions across the globe. Chances are you’ve heard a few before.
“Yes, but we’ve already tried that.”
“Yes, but it costs too much.”
“Yes, but we would never do that.”
The result? People stop contributing, ideas get safer and the end product feels a lot less “new.”
Human nature being what it is, it’s easy to be swept up in negative thinking—and train ourselves to see only resistance, barriers and even failure when approaching challenges. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
“I have learned in life that if I am against things—at best, I can block them from happening,” commented South African teacher, Oz Swallow in a talk at the Creative Problem Solving Institute years ago. “Instead, if I focus on creating what I am for, I can truly make a difference in this world.”