Today, I want to share the story of Steve G., a practicing lawyer and neighbor in my office building. I would frequently run into him while grabbing coffee in the cafeteria but never knew much about him. One day I asked him if he wanted to have lunch and get to know each other better. That was around April and he told me his earliest opening wasn’t until June. I said, “Steve, it’s just lunch… you must stop and eat, don’t you?” He agreed to go but only blocked me out a forty-five minute time frame. Little did either of us know that it would turn into a three-hour lunch.
During my last trip to Paris, I stopped by one of my favorite museums, Museé d’Orsay. I figured on this trip I would mix a little pleasure with business, so I arrived a day earlier than need be. While I was trying to sneak a few photos past the security guards on the fifth floor, I noticed a great deal of attention around the Auguste Rodin sculpture, “The Walking Man.” At first I was curious because on previous floors of the museum I saw several beautifully polished white marble sculptures without a flaw that drew much less attention.
We were ready to board the plane. Everything seemed fine for this Barcelona to London Heathrow flight scheduled to leave in about 35 minutes. Just then, the Captain, with his perfectly pressed suit and neatly placed cap, came off the plane, walked right past the boarding crew and directly at us. Kindly waving his arms and calling out he formed us into a sort of huddle around him and then began to address us.
Nothing sucks the blood out of a great idea faster than the dreaded “Yabut…” In fact, the “Yabut” may be the No. 1 killer of collaboration, cooperation, great ideas and innovation in organizations.
You know what “Yabuts” are, don’t you? They are those prickly little creatures that make noises like; “Yabut, the banks will never back us on this one… Yabut, the market is totally unpredictable… Yabut, we’ve never done that before…”