Senior Management and Critical Information

When did Senior Management become sacred?  I am amazed how many times I see a bubble around Senior Management that stops people from bringing critical information to them.

So how do you tell them you think their “great idea” is a bad idea?

In order to handle this best you need to start with the facts and then some positive assumptions. (If you are going to make assumptions make sure they are always positive so that you bring good energy in to the discussion.)

  1. Start with the positive premise that your Senior Management wants to do the best for the company. 
  2. They would never want to do anything that would ruin the company. 
  3. They want to have all voices heard respectfully.
  4. No person likes to be told they are stupid in front of a group or that they don’t want to drive great results.
  5. You probably know some information they don’t that will shed new light on the topic.
  6. They probably know some information you don’t that may make you think their “bad idea” is a good idea.
  7. They hired you because they think you are smart and you will add value to the team.

So let’s start by adding value.

In order to have this come off well you need to do three critical things:

  1. Find out what they know that you don’t that may make you rethink the idea.
  2. Clarify to make sure you understand what outcome they are trying to reach and why they think this will help them reach that outcome.
  3. Once you understand their desired outcome, recap it for them so they can tell you, “Yes, that is what I am trying to accomplish.”

Once you are all in agreement on the outcome that is trying to be achieved you can respectfully talk about what in the idea will make that work and what will stop it from working.  You can then move the discussion around to how to implement.

As the leading Outcome Strategist, Anne Warfield shows people how to say the right thing at the right time every time.  The revolutionary Outcome Focus® Approach shows how to build a candid corporate culture of communication that allows you to lead, present and negotiate transformationally rather than transactionally. When applying Outcome Thinking® our client’s results include sales cycles reducing by 75%, turnover reducing by 30%, silos evaporating, and a 25% savings of time by executives.  Find out how you can maximize your corporate culture for greater productivity and results!  Contact us at 888-imp-9421, visit,  or