One of the great disservices many companies do to themselves is to encourage the existence of a layer of managers/executives whose primary source of credibility/respect is being the first to say ‘No’ to an idea.

There are generally lots of ramifications for people who say ‘Yes’ to an idea that subsequently flops. Yet there is almost never any ramifications for people who say ‘No’ to an idea that subsequently turns out to be valid (usually demonstrated by a competitor).

In short, most organisations make it easier (and safer) to say ‘No’ than ‘Yes’ – and that spells almost certain disaster.

Who are the nay-sayers in your organisation? How do you highlight this ‘responsibility gap’? How do you invert this management practice?