Nigel L., a student form an Ivy League entrepreneurship program, wrote:

Rebecca, I do my best to be a team player when I’m working on a project with other students. I do my share and often do more than my share of analysis. This can be a problem as I often find glitches and point them out to the group. 9/10 times my detective work pays off with a better grades for all of us. However, much of that time I get resistance to my observations from some other team members and that affects our relationship. What to do?

Nigel, you are truly COREageous! It’s too bad the others don’t appreciate your insights and what you do for their grades! But here are some things you can do to lessen the resistance:

  • Know when to speak up, and when not to. You are clearly to be relied upon to find problems. But once in a while, you might wait to be asked for your analysis until you’ve given the others time to find the glitch and be the hero for a change. Listen to others before speaking up. If someone else notes a glitch before you, thank them for their discovery.
  • Do you go into too much detail? Attention spans are short and people are impatient. Point out the problem, a couple supporting points and your suggestions. Keep your rebuttal short.
  • Perhaps a better choice of words or a bit of humor may pay off better for you? Phrases like, “I’d like your opinion on this one,” or “It may surprise you guys, but I have noticed something interesting!”

Speaking up is stepping up — a startup strength. We just try not to bruise more egos than necessary!

Finding resistance to your ideas? Step up and contact me at Rebecca

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