Today I was listening in on the Law School Tech Talk webcast and the guest speaker, Doug Edmunds, Assistant Dean for IT at UNC Law, made a comment that really struck a chord with me. He mentioned the sort of knee jerk response to change or innovation that we're probably all guilty of at one time or another. It comes in a variety of forms but a few you'll recognize are "that won't work because. . ." or "that might have worked for them but we're different. . ." or "we've always done it this way. . ." In a word, this reaction to change in the workplace amounts to: NO!
For collaboration to flourish the culture of NO has to be abandoned. Workplace leaders have to take conscious steps to develop a culture of YES! This requires a lot of stuff we're not comfortable with, like risk, loss, failure, the unknown. But I think we have to pull our heels from the soil, take off the blinders and adopt this posture before we're made irrelevant by those who are excited about leading change and are willing to experiment.
Do you have any ideas for fostering the Culture of Yes? What have you or others done in your workplace?