Posted by: Anne | June 4, 2016

the beneficial benefit of the doubt

This One Mindset Hack Will Transform Your Team

Imagine your most frustrating employee or team member. Now imagine giving them the benefit of the doubt: assume there might be a valid explanation for their behavior. You might be thinking, “They don’t deserve it. They’re always missing deadlines.” Or: “They’re totally disorganized.” Or: “They’re always undermining my leadership.” Insert your own emotional response here.

Those excuses are easy to come by–small defenses that provide cold comfort. But ask yourself: what do you win by not trying this hack? Some sense of satisfaction that you’ve identified your employees’ weaknesses? A scapegoat strategy that blames your team for not having the capacity to change? Do any of these get you closer to the dream?

Instead, what if, every time an employee disappointed you, underperformed, or under-delivered, you said to yourself: “I bet there is a really good reason this happened.” That change in assumption is the mindset shift in miniature. Follow it up by scheduling some time with that person, privately, to inquire. Use an open question like, “I was hoping you might be able to fill me in on what happened back there. Can you share your perspective?”

Giving the benefit of the doubt isn’t difficult–unless your ego is in the way, of course. Quiet that voice for a moment and you’ll be surprised at what you can hear.

Read the full article at the source:


  1. Of course, the benefit of the doubt is also beneficial in non-business relationships as well…

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