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Let your people say no

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in Leaders & Managers,Workplace Communication

Some CEOs don’t like to listen to naysayers. But Gregory Slayton, head of ClickAction Inc. in Palo Alto, Calif., loves an argument.

In fact, he reminds employees of their “obligation to dissent.” By tapping their brainpower and urging them to think independently, Slayton finds he can make the fastest, wisest choices.

He says soliciting honest opinions lets him concentrate on their merits. And his managers know that as long as they support their points and make sound arguments, they won’t be labeled “wrong.”

“This eliminates the gaming that can get in the way of thinking through a problem and finding the best solution,” he says. “When everyone’s comfortable speaking up, there’s less risk of them hoarding information, back-stabbing or anything else that diverts us from our goal.”

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