The goal of every discussion.

The goal of every discussion should be the search for the best idea.

If it’s not your intention in the current conversation — then take a moment and look for a reason. You could be emotional so it would be better to wait until the chemicals leave your system and you become sober. Or you could be looking for a personal gain and it will become apparent to your peers eventually and in most cases will lead to a conflict. So join the discussion only if you are willing to search for the best idea.

If you want all the participants to look for the best idea follow this three steps:

  • invite everyone to state their goals
  • ask if looking for the best ideas should be the only goal of the discussion
  • if everyone is on board — go ahead with the discussion. If not — it’s better not to start it.

6 month ago we made a habit at Salt & Pepper to do this at the beginning of each meeting. It saved us lots of time. If you don’t do this at your company — you should.

P.S. Right now I’m looking for a way to eliminate meetings completely (or close to it). I’ll try to write on this subject in the future.