Object

“Any objection?”

It’s an easy yet surprisingly effective way to solidify what a group is deciding. Two words (three if you must: “Does anyone object?”) are all you need to give everyone involved a chance to speak their mind and stop the group from doing what it’s considering doing.

Hearing none, it’s decided. We know what we’re doing and nobody is left out.

Hearing one, we spend more time on it.

The one objecting gets to explain themselves without being required to detail an alternative solution. An objection is just a “no,” not a “no, and instead.” But the “no” must be grounded in something the rest of us can understand and address. “I just don’t like it” is not an objection but a temperament.

Allowing anyone to say no helps everyone say yes.

One thought on “Object

  1. This reminds me of one of my favorite family stories. Something had to be decided at the Presbyterian church my parents and my mother’s parents attended together. It looked like a unanimous decision in favor of the point, but the pastor suggested counting votes against and insisted that they be recorded. When Dad told me there were four votes against, I said, “I’m related to every one of them, aren’t I?”
    He grinned and said yes. That’s given me courage in all sorts of meetings.

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