IT Management Slideshow: Make Your Ideas Bulletproof

By Dennis McCafferty  |  Posted 10-28-2010

Make Your Ideas Bulletproof

Anticipate push-back in advance.When you prepare for every way that someone can say "no," the only other possible response is "Yes!"

Make Your Ideas Bulletproof

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Recognize these four "idea killers."1. Fear-mongeringThis strategy involves introducing phrases such as "unproven results" and "excessive risks" into the conversation to cast doubt.

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Recognize these four "idea killers."2. DelayThe idea-killer using this method will end the conversation with "Let's table this for now" and makes sure it doesn't come up again until it's too late to act.

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Recognize these four "idea killers."3. ConfusionIrrelevant facts and convoluted logic are brought up to "cloud" the dialogue.

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Recognize these four "idea killers."4. RidiculeThis approach attacks the messenger, not the message. Execs may question the CIO's competence, experience, character or preparation in an attempt to knock down a perfectly valid opportunity.

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10 Ways to Slay Idea Killers1. Don't keep potential opponents out of the room.It will only heighten their desire to block you. Instead, encourage them to "shoot" at you and be ready to fire back in an emotionally detached, businesslike manner.

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10 Ways to Slay Idea Killers2. Don't give too much data. It can encourage fear-mongering and confusion. Instead, streamline your presentation to focus only on core data that supports your argument. Present it in clear, logical and concise fashion.

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10 Ways to Slay Idea Killers3. Don't try to "out-bully" the bullies who ridicule you.Treat them with professional respect instead. You'll come across as the bigger person and win over those you need.

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10 Ways to Slay Idea Killers4. Don't spend a disproportionate amount of time responding to push-back.If push-back accounts for a minority of comments, then don't let it account for a majority of your response.

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10 Ways to Slay Idea Killers5. Never let others feel that your idea is needed because of their failures.Assure everyone that any failure occurred because of a lack of resources needed for everyone to perform at their best - resources that your IT idea will provide.

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10 Ways to Slay Idea Killers6. Understand that questions are not expressions of skepticism.A high number of questions can speak to a high level of engagement with your idea.

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10 Ways to Slay Idea Killers7. Don't buy the "We tried this before and it didn't work" argument.Explain how conditions have changed - and what's been learned since the prior failure.

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10 Ways to Slay Idea Killers8. Win over the risk-averse.If opponents caution about your idea putting the organization "on a slippery slope," remind them that no good idea comes without risk. Outline the "guard rails" you've already scouted in advance to keep the organization from falling off a cliff.

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10. Ways to Slay Idea Killers9. Be concise, and put it in writing.Don't bombard your audience with a lengthy report. Like your presentation, the written proposal should be concise and packed with supportive detail.

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10 Ways to Slay Idea Killers10. Say "Thanks!"Make sure everyone in the room knows you appreciate their time and efforts - even those who raise doubts. It's the doubters who challenge you to be at your best.

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