Things to avoid saying when suggesting an idea
Twenty odd years ago we had a rule for my team at work. It went like this:
“When we make a suggestion, put forward a point of view or an idea, as part of a discussion, brainstorming session, etc, it’d be great if we could avoid starting with something like:
– Just to be a devil’s advocate …
– I’ve got an idea no one’s thought of …
– Here’s an obvious idea we’ve overlooked …
– I’ve got a more realistic idea ….
– I’ve got a practical suggestion …
and their variations.
It’d be great if instead, we could simply make our suggestion or, if appropriate, start with something like:
“My idea is …”; “I think …”; or “I reckon ….”
The openings to be avoided don’t particularly add anything so can be left out.
But more importantly, they can sometimes be seen as – and in some cases might even be meant as – a bit of a put-down of others and their contributions.
Okay, that’s it. If you’ve got a few expressions you think are best avoided – especially at work – please let me know.
All the best, Mark.