I’m sure at some point, like me, you will have played the Yes/ No game.
One person thinks of an item or a person, and the others ask questions to which the answers can only be Yes/ No in order to derive clues so they can guess what the item is or who the person is.
The Yes/ No questions need to be very specific otherwise it can be difficult to extract a Yes/ No answer.
In business, indeed in life in general, have you ever noticed that people find it easy to say “yes” when they are achieving something, but when they aren’t achieving, they struggle to say ‘no’… they tend to tell a story, to obfuscate, to start to explain away their inaction! So instead of saying “No, I haven’t done it” they will ‘go all round the houses,’ and actually often change the subject to deflect onto something else.
So, when people are asked, for example, “Did you make those sales calls this week?” they either say “Yes,” or they say “Well, on Monday I had a meeting which went on longer than I thought, and then on Tuesday I was going to, but I had to pick up some paper from the stationers first thing in the morning, and then Wednesday was a nightmare because someone had moved my waste-paper-bin…” and so on.
Yet, in the field of human endeavour, in the world of business, in any area of success, those who achieve most have a Black/ White attitude, a Yes/ No approach. They keep it simple. They also know whether they are “Producing” or “Excusing”.
So, the person who wants to become a great musician focuses on playing, practicing, constant practice, and constant improvement of playing their particular instrument. Every day, whether they have practiced enough or not has a Yes/No answer.
The person who wants to run a marathon knows the answer to the question as to whether they have done sufficient running this week. It’s yes/ no.
The best salespeople know whether they have done the key things this week.
It’s Yes/ No
What is it in your role that you can set yourself a no-excuse rule for?