Career progress and performance is an important area in life and through my experience in striving to improve my performance I’ve learned to find many ways to perform well in my career.  It’s not been without its share of hard work though!  And as a manager, I also have insight and perspective from the other side of expectations and performance improvements and so these career tips come from that mix of experience and from my own study and practice in my career.  Please comment below if you have related experience or any stories where you have used this tip!

Building on Others’ Ideas

Ideas are an important aspect of change and change is what drives any organization closer and closer towards excellence.  If ideas are not used to feed the company’s progress, then growth will typically halt.  However, ideas need to be shared in a way that reinforces that ideas culture, not destroys it.  Ideas are often very personal and the reaction to an idea can easily have a lasting impact that influences future behavior quite strongly.

When an idea is presented some people criticize that idea and others ignore it and come up with another idea or change it. Saying something as simple as, “Here’s a better idea, blah blah blah” is very common but in actuality, it is harsh criticism about the original idea and a way to claim the new idea selfishly.  It is subtle but very destructive.  This tip is to change your working and approach when it comes to ideas and that is to always build on others’ ideas instead of criticizing or replacing them.  Changing your response to, “That is a great idea AND we could add this or do that also” is an easy way to build on others’ ideas.  Supporting people’s ideas instead of judging them is important to promote cooperation and collaboration to work together instead of against each other.

Replacing ideas or criticizing them builds competition and quickly has people learning that when they share their ideas, they are criticized, which leads quickly to people NOT sharing their ideas anymore.  This is the last thing you want for any organization and its especially not something you want for your own reputation either.  So, support others and their ideas and build on them, adding value and leaving them the credit instead of looking to take it or replace their idea with your own.

Prev: Career Tip: Do Work Your Boss Does
Next: Career Tip: Show Enthusiasm in ALL of Your Work