This is a philosophy which Premier Team Building lives by. It originates from a Richard Branson — 'If somebody offers you an amazing opportunity but you are not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later!'
Whenever you approach a challenge, feedback or new idea, always answer with “Okay. How?”
By saying Okay, you yourself are committing to the solution of a problem or to a new idea. If you invest yourself this way, you are more likely to work through the steps.
“How do we do it?” this turns the suggestion or idea on its head and makes the other person work with you to see how it is feasible. It create dialogue between two parties.
When you approach something with this mentality you are more willing to try new things, look at problems from another position, or find the real underlying issue.
Take this for an example: An IT company has a client call demanding that they ensure their website has Zero downtime, at no point should their website not be live. Now the company could say "No way", or "Okay. How?" By asking themselves how do they make this a reality they will work through the problem with them client. Talk to them about why it may or may not be possible. What they might find out through this, is that the client found their website down. The hadn’t been on it for 4 days. To them the website was down for 4 days. What they really want to know is WHEN it goes down.
So by working through the solution with the client, they could come to the conclusion that the company will develop a system which A. notifies them when a site down and B. notifies the client. This way they can update the client with an ETA.
By Saying “No we can’t guarantee that” they might lose the client all together rather than find a solution which would benefit them and all other clients, creating a unique selling point.
This principle works great for teams when you are discussing new methods to solve a problem. Say Okay to all ideas, then find our how. Chances are many of them won’t work. But through that discussion of their idea, it can spawn a new idea which may lead to the solution of that or another problem.
Often issues are so underlying people forget what they actually are. They keep putting more duct tape over the leaking pipe, but what really needs to happen is the pipe to be replaced.
Even with complaints you can work through the problem. Sometimes the issue comes from a misunderstanding, or an individual not having all the correct information.
If you adopt the “Okay. How?” mentality you will find creative solutions, solve unknown problems and improve policies. All the while improving morale as the team feels as though their input is valuable because no idea is shot down.