10 Ways to Be Creative (#4)

April 15th, 2011

#4 – Don’t be a “yes man”  or a “no woman". Just be smart.

You may think after the first few posts of urging support staff to--ahem--support their senior leaders, that I am advocating simply being a mindless “yes man”. 

I am not.

Some people think being a leader is just about being a contrarian and finding what's wrong with everyone else's ideas. It’s not. That’s just annoying.

“Yes men” are wimps and any good leader will not surround himself or herself with them for very long. 

“No men” are negative and ruin creativity. You will find yourself getting un-invited from the creative meetings if you go there.

Here is how I support Pastor Greg without being a “yes man” or a “no man”.

1.  Gather the facts.  I find that if I am prepared and know the facts I am able to help him make decisions.  When I simply say “yes” or “no” based on emotion or opinion I am no good to him.  I keep myself very up-to-date on everything having to do with “the weekend” so that I am always able to present the facts surrounding a decision.

2.  Share your opinions sparingly.  Opinions are like copies of In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day: everyone has one.  But the deal is, if I want to have credibility, I will not just run around sharing my opinion, but instead will help my leader form his opinion by giving him every tool he needs to make a decision.  After seven years of earning Greg’s trust I can share more opinions now than I could in my first few years. In seven more I will be able to share even more. Take the time to earn the trust before you start opining.

3.  Be willing to push back.  Pushback is different than just opinion and arguing.  Pushback needs to come with a sense of passion and fervor because you will be pushed back upon in most cases. If you don’t have passion, you will back down easily because you really don’t care, and if every time you push back you quickly back down, you will cease to be relevant.  

4.  Be willing to back down.  On the other hand, if all you do is argue and don’t know when to stop, you will cease to be liked and invited (thus also losing relevance)

So, if you want to be relevant in order to be creative – don’t be wimpy.

comments powered by Disqus