Is your day filled with interruptions? Are you tired of a parade of employees or coworkers complaining about some issue – personality conflicts with other staff members, technical problems, communication problems or computer failures. You name it…we’ve all heard about it.
Many times management takes on more of the role of parent or psychotherapist. Sometimes there’s almost an atmosphere of co-dependency. Everybody blames everything and everyone else for their problems at work.
A lot of us have acquired the habit of dumping a problem on our manager’s shoulder to let the boss figure out the solution. Try creating a “solution only” atmosphere. Every employee should be encouraged to have at least three possible solutions to any complaint or problem before voicing it.
At first, people may be a little frustrated or even angry at this new approach. After awhile, most will start to get the hang of it. They will soon realize that they not only came up with a solution but they also realized that they were able to implement it themselves.
Capitalize on this new approach and incorporate it into your staff meetings. Eliminate the long, boring reporting sessions and instead ask each team to identify a key issue that they want to get resolved. Then brainstorm all the possible solutions to that issue. Empower your staff even further by asking each employee to take a turn facilitating the meetings. Creative ideas will flow, productivity will increase and morale will improve.
When you have a whole team of possibility thinkers, there is a greater sense of ownership. Everyone becomes part of the solution. It creates a far more pleasant environment and reduces stress. Be patient, because possibility thinking does not come naturally to everyone but it can be learned.
Are you wondering if you are a possibility thinker? Try this quiz and see. . .
–Are you willing to begin a new project without being absolutely guaranteed of its success?
–Will you start working on a new idea before you have every single fact?
–Do you concentrate on the ways something can be done instead of looking for reasons why it won’t work?
–Are you inclined to accept a solution to a problem, even when you can’t visualize it?
–Do you immediately point out the advantages of an idea before you point out the disadvantages?
–Are you open to doing old tasks in new ways?
–Do you ever accept a new idea even if you have already made other plans?
If you answered, “yes” to these questions, congratulations — you are a possibility thinker and the sky’s the limit.
If you answered “no” to these questions, you may be limiting your opportunity for personal and professional success as well as impacting the success of your team.
Regardless of your position in your company, possibility thinking will enhance self-esteem, foster better work relations and improve communication. Possibility thinkers resolve problems faster and make everyone’s day more productive and enjoyable.