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I’ve been talking to different clients in the last couple of weeks from different industries and different countries.  Although from different backgrounds they kept saying the same thing to me…

“Yes, but...”

As in, “yes you’re right Guy, we should do that, but we don’t have the (fill in the gap here)…”

At least they were being honest. 

As ‘experts’ we can do a lot of things for clients and their teams - we can create the awareness of the problem; highlight the consequences; demonstrate tools, hints and tips; break actions into small steps (we call them micro behaviours); create an environment for them to practice; motivate, browbeat and cajole (sometimes in the same breath).  But we can’t force anyone to do anything they don’t want to.

Courage is a powerful, emotive word.  Courage is action, not talking.

We often know when we should do things differently, or when we should do different things.  As human beings we are extremely creative in thinking up reasons why we shouldn’t (if only we could harness that creative energy in other ways!).  Mostly it comes down to being worried about what other people think.

Social judgement is a powerful force.  It takes courage to change things if you believe you may be judged negatively.

But courage is infectious.  If someone starts to be courageous, then it is easier for them and others to repeat it.  And make it grow.

Courage doesn’t have to start big.  It can be as little as saying “no, that’s not a good use of my time”.
Any maybe the “yes, but” will start to become “yes, how…”