This feels like a moment to get good at proposals. Nobody knows what we’re doing, but everybody has the same opportunity to propose things to do. An online youth service learning cohort. Livestreamed worship. Sabbath. All of these options had to be proposed by someone who was willing to be told “no” or willing to try a thing that could flop. If it did flop, the person who proposed the idea would be known.

I want to get better at proposals, which means (I think) that I need to get better at thinking on my own for longer before I share an idea and solicit input. “What could we do?” feels a lot less useful than “Here’s what I propose we do,” because “Here’s what I propose” contains actual content people can react to, and reacting to content flexes a different muscle than coming up with something out of thin air.

Maybe collaboration works best when it starts with a specific proposal.

2 thoughts on “Proposal

  1. In my experience, starting with a proposal works better (much) more often than not. It’s also better for morale – proposals contain guardrails. Absence of those inevitably leads to some impractical ideas and someone feeling like they wasted their time “if you weren’t going to do anything really new anyway.”

  2. Rocky,

    I thought this…when I was serving as a pastor…that it helped to come in defined so that others had something to work with/off…

    I am sobered by what Annie Duke says about the impact of early declarations by the leader on the potential for creative problem solving in a group

    You might want to check it out….the rest of the podcast is meaningful to me as well..



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