Whether it is a creative brainstorm or a meeting with your supervisor, sharing your ideas is crucial. However, getting the go ahead or approval for your ideas depends on how you communicate them. So often a great idea gets lost when poorly articulated, or an average idea tends to stand out because of how effectively it is presented.
Here are a few ways to share your ideas effectively:
Know who you are talking to
How you share your idea depends on who your audience is. While your trusted work mate might immediately understand what you are talking about, as she or he might have the same struggles, your boss will probably need some context or perhaps a gentler approach.
As you know what you want to achieve with your ideas, you should provide some background information and context for you others to understand them. For instance, your boss might not understand why you want to hire freelancers, but if you highlight how this hire will make his/her job easier, you will increase your chances of getting what you want.
Use supporting information
Sharing your ideas during presentations is a great way to make yourself understood. However, there is also a potential danger of miscommunication. As you might have worked for several days on your idea and presentation, you know exactly what you are talking about. But your audience might not immediately follow.
During presentations, you often have the chance to use supporting information, such as statistics or visuals. Try to underline and base your entire thought process on facts and visuals that clearly illustrate your idea. It’s recommended to practice with someone who ideally doesn’t know anything about the subject. If they understand your idea, you are on the right track.
Offer practical details
All ideas seem perfect in theory, but might actually not necessarily be easy to implement. Before sharing your idea enthusiastically, it’s important to think about how to execute it realistically.
Thinking about the practical aspects of your idea can actually help you refine certain details. Your chances of success will improve considerably if you offer not only an idea but also a solution and a pathway to it.
Present counter arguments This point might seem counterproductive at first, as most people tend to highlight the positive aspects of their ideas. However, you have to be aware of the fact that there are always two sides to everything. While your idea makes perfect sense to you, someone else may raise objections.
Before sharing your idea, try to be as objective as possible and list all counter arguments you can think of. Presenting the pros and cons of your idea, especially when talking to your superior, will make them seem more balanced and reasonable. Just make sure you are able to defend your idea!