Tip of the Day: How To Get Your Idea Approved

Post-it notes with thoughts from a brainstorming session are seen at the Innovations meeting room at the Focus on the Family headquarters in Colorado Springs, Colorado July 20, 2007. REUTERS/Rick Wilking

Post-it notes with thoughts from a brainstorming session are seen at the Innovations meeting room at the Focus on the Family headquarters in Colorado Springs, Colorado July 20, 2007.

Don’t assume that others will share your enthusiasm for a great new idea, but instead plan on ways to give your proposal a fighting chance of getting backing, says Harvard Business Review.

The Management Tip of the Day offers quick, practical management tips and ideas from Harvard Business Review and HBR.org (www.hbr.org). Any opinions expressed are not endorsed by Reuters.

“When you have a great idea, don’t assume that others will share your enthusiasm for it. Whether a recommendation or proposal is approved is often less about the value of the idea itself than how it is presented.

Here are three things you can do to give your next proposal a fighting chance:

1. Build allies. Meet with stakeholders before you need their formal approval to generate interest and pre-sell them on the idea.

2. Keep it simple. Don’t weigh your proposal down with tons of data and analysis. Too many details can distract an audience. Be straightforward and concise.

3. Highlight the benefits. Your audience will want to know what’s in it for them. Be sure to position the idea in terms of the benefits they stand to gain.”

-Today’s management tip was adapted from “How to Get Your Idea Approved” by Amy Gallo.

Credit: Reuters/Rick Wilking

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