Summary: Questioning team members can be viewed as “Roadblocks” - getting in the way of your vision - or “Street Cleaners” - cleaning up potentially harmful debris from your path. As much as possible, try to view these team members as “Street Cleaners” who are helping you.

You have a new and brilliant idea. As you begin to share this idea, one of your team members seems to have a slight frown. This team member tips their head to the side and slowly raises their hand. They seem to be quietly interrupting your train of thought and your flow of vision. They respectfully ask you a series of baseline questions.

How do you view this person? They are likely viewed as one of two things in your mind. They are either viewed as a “Roadblock” or they are viewed as a “Street Cleaner.” As they ask questions, you might perceive them as oppositional to you and to your vision. You might see them as trying to STOP your vision or idea from happening. I mean, they are questioning you, right? If this is the case, you would likely view them as a “Roadblock.” Roadblocks are frustrating and you might want to REMOVE THEM from the conversation as they are holding up your show.

On the other hand, they might be viewed as a “Street Cleaner.” In this case, as they ask you questions, they may be seeking to remove harmful debris from your path, thus HELPING the vision move forward. As they ask questions, you could see them as ASSISTING your vision. If this is the case, you would see them as helping clean the street from debris. This person would be someone you would want to KEEP IN the conversation, as they are helping you.

Now, to be fair, there are many factors to consider in this situation, like past experience, tone of voice and body language. However, can I challenge you to view people as “Street Cleaners” for your vision and not as a “Roadblock” for your vision? I think it might help us all.