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  • Writer's pictureReeshemah Davis

Powerful Pair: Yes, And



I love this phrase: Yes, And!


It’s a facilitator and brainstorming tool I use often in my learning solutions and group conversations.


It’s a powerful way to acknowledge the wisdom in the room and build upon ideas without minimizing others. It keeps creativity at the forefront and reduces idea editing and groupthink. What can be ideated with a “Yes, And” phrase is incredible.

 

When you use this phrase in your meetings, group settings, or conversations you invite:

 

Encouragement of Inclusivity: By starting with "Yes," you affirm the value of each person’s contributions, regardless of their background or perspective. This fosters an inclusive environment where everyone feels heard and respected, irrespective of their identity.

 

Acknowledgment of Diverse Perspectives: "And" implies building upon what has been said rather than dismissing or negating it. This approach acknowledges the validity of diverse perspectives and encourages the team to consider different viewpoints, experiences, and ideas.

 

Promoting Collaboration: Instead of your team members competing to have their ideas accepted, the team works together to expand upon each other's contributions, leading to richer and more innovative outcomes.

 

Strengthening Problem-Solving Skills: By encouraging the team to build upon each other's ideas, the team learns to see connections between concepts and collaboratively generate innovative solutions.

 

Empowerment of Marginalized Voices: Certain voices may be marginalized or overlooked in many settings. Team members from underrepresented groups share their perspectives without fear of judgment or dismissal, ultimately enriching the brainstorming process.

 

Creation of a Safe Space for Risk-Taking: Inclusive environments provide a safe space for participants to take risks and share unconventional ideas. This can lead to breakthrough innovations that might not have emerged in a more restrictive or judgmental setting.

 

Can you believe that these two simple words combined can have such an impact?

 

I invite you to try “Yes, And” at your next group meeting. Please let me know how it went and share what shifted in the room for your team.

 

 

 

 I am a DEI Strategist and Executive Coach. I help leadership teams improve workplace culture through inclusive strategies and sustainable solutions. Contact me to schedule a FREE strategy session.

 

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