soffit installation concrete siding mundelein crane siding riverwoods siding calculator wadsworth siding options lakemoor .. Chicago Drug testing

How To Encourage Ideas From Your Team At Meetings

You're at a meeting with key staff. You want some new ideas to address the topic. Looking around at this group of creative, ambitious, bright people, you say, "Let's get some fresh ideas on this. Who's got something?"

Suddenly,you feel like the high-school teacher who has asked a question about the homework no one did. People find their notepads fascinating, others fumble in their briefcases muttering things no one can hear, still others stare into space seeming lost in thought. No one is looking at you.

What's going on?

There are many reasons for this unproductive response to your query. In my many years of working with groups,I've found the reason most often is one of these:

1. People are afraid of looking like idiots in front of bosses and peers.

2. They don't entirely understand the question or the topic itself.

3. They worry their ideas are not "fresh" enough or "new" enough for you and offering them will subject them to criticism (and might even show up on their performance review).

4. They've seen others who gave ideas be attacked and embarrassed and don't want to join that elite club.

5. They didn't realize this was to be an interactive discussion and were thinking about other work and waiting for the meeting to end. They're now caught unprepared.

6. Caught off-guard, their minds are blank.

What can you do to change this situation?

If you could re-do the meeting from the start, you might send out an agenda and indicate on it or the cover note that you'd like people to bring ideas with them on,for example,topic #2. Thus,you'd give the group advance notice and they can consider the task ahead of time. Or at the start of the discussion, when you're explaining why this topic is important and how the company got to this point, you could warn the team that you'll be asking for ideas after sharing information. Thus, they'll gear up their listening and be ready with some ideas when the time comes.

So,that's what you'll do next time. But now, here you are, trying to make eye contact with your team and wondering what happened to all the bright-eyed thinkers.

Creativity requires two important things: a safe climate and good thinking. People may have insightful and innovative ideas but if the perceived risk of offering them is high, those ideas will never see the light of day. There is the rare chance that you are simply hiring the wrong people ? but that's another issue! So let's examine the first, far more common, situation.

Why might employees perceive offering ideas to be risky? Look around your company. Are people rewarded who try new things? Are mistakes severely punished? When people make suggestions that seem patently impossible, are they met with groans or rolling eyes? In meetings, like the one you're in, do ideas get ignored, met with silence, discounted? Do status and hierarchy games get played where the lower level people are not heard? Are ideas stolen and presented later as someone else's?

As the start of this meeting, you can manage the climate. Here are seven things you can do to encourage and elicit ideas:

1. Say something encouraging like, "Let's get a range of ideas up here on the flipchart. All ideas are good ideas and I'd like you all to hold off on negative comments or judgments. Later on, we'll select from the big list."

2. Give a brief summary of the topic (again, if necessary) not only to remind them of the situation but also to give them time to think.

3. Welcome each and every idea, even if it seems you've heard it many times before. Your behavior will be closely watched and how you treat ideas will invite more or shut them off.

4. Either you or someone else write up the ideas (on a flipchart if possible) in the words of the giver. This gives encouragement and assurance that their idea is valuable.

5. Notice if ideas are coming from only a few people. Some individuals find the hurly-burly of a fast-paced meeting to be uncomfortable. Consider having the group take a minute or two to write down some ideas. Then, first ask for people to talk who haven't yet had a chance. The quieter, more introspective people will appreciate this open invitation.

6. Rather than evaluate each idea as it is offered, add it to the list for later selection. You'll have a wide mix of ideas and can then choose among them for intriguing ones that could benefit from further development.

7. Be patient. It's rare that brilliant ideas emerge right away. In fact, many breakthroughs come from the combination of smaller ideas. Remember that people often give "safe" ideas first and only offer the more creative ones when they've gauged the climate to be open-minded.

So, that's what you can do this time. And use these ideas for next time, so you won't get the "caught in the headlights" look. It's really simple, if you're willing to make the effort. Your staff will thank you for it.

Peg Kelley, MBA, has been a professional meeting facilitator for 25 years & is co-author of the booklet "39 Secrets for Effective and Enjoyable Meetings" available for $6.00 at her Facilitation Plus website at www.meetingswithmuscle.com. She publishes a free e-newsletter on Meeting Management Tips. Send your email address to her at Kelley@facplus.com if you want to receive it.

In The News:

Team Building requires one great dynamic for true Success - Mateship

A Successful Team is built around mateship, around respect for... Read More

Working as a Winning Team

It's a great sunny day so it's time to get... Read More

Discovering the Truth on MLM

Truth on mlmDid you know that the truth on mlm... Read More

Your Administration Team - Look After Them

In most organisations the administration/support team, although they can be... Read More

Teamwork, Rowing, & Paddles

Effective and sustainable teambuilding is necessary in today's marketplace where... Read More

The Top 7 Things Entrepreneurs Need to Know About Employees

As I work with clients to strengthen their teams and... Read More

Raising Issues In Your Group or Offline

In a recent group coaching session, a client mentioned that... Read More

Team Work - A Challenge of Character

Over the years there has been much ado about team... Read More

The Secret of Successful Events

Reed Employment made a survey of their clients and compiled... Read More

Team Development and Learning

A tight knit team is a group of competent individuals... Read More

7 Key Dimensions of High Performance Teams

7 Key Dimensions of High Performance Teams We can always... Read More

Finding The Leader Within (Keys To Zen Leadership)

Most believe that leadership is an innate quality that some... Read More

Leading the Witness: How Asking Questions as a Trainer Can Limit Learning and Reduce Trust

"Asking questions can be a means of establishing authority, fulfilling... Read More

Franchisee Relations and Team Work

Franchisees of a particular franchise must get along in order... Read More

Business Innovation ? Effective Team Structures

Creativity can be defined as problem identification and idea generation... Read More

Teams

For companies to be competitive, decisions have to be made... Read More

Feedback - How to Make it Effective

Let's look at the detail of giving feedback. Whether you... Read More

How Does Personal Development Help in Business?

Teams run most businesses and teams work best if each... Read More

Leadership, Genuine, Meaningful and Productive

One of the best lessons I have learned is the... Read More

General Patton and Leadership

No figure in history is like General Patton. He was... Read More

Consensus: The Right Team Decision Strategy?

Consensus is the appropriate decision strategy for the most important... Read More

Aligning Teams with Organizational Goals

Teams don't have to be aligned with the goals of... Read More

Top Ten Things About Team Building

People who lead the best teams realise early on that... Read More

Conflict Is Cool

Having experienced more than my fair share of conflict over... Read More

Building Teams -You see it everywhere

A college football team has it. A corporation has it.... Read More

led light wholesalers street light video Pete's produce ..
led light wholesalers street light video Pete's produce ..