Improvise: Taking his cues from comedy improv, Pink instructs us to pay attention to how comics do it. The basic structure of improv is 1) to hear “offers”; 2) Say “Yes, and”; and 3) Make your partner look GOOD.
a. Hearing offers is about tuning in to the other person. In a conversation, most people politely wait to speak, rather than really listen. Considering anything a person says as an “offer” means you’re on the right track to hearing. “Sorry we can’t do business now” might mean that we CAN do business later when the economy comes back.
b. Say “Yes, and” is based on positive buoyancy and is a lot different from “Yes, but.” So, “Yes, and” builds on your partner’s investment, and “yes, but” negates it—threatens your partner. “Yes, and” finds a way to figure it out.
c. Make your partner look good: Think win-win (not win-lose). We should always take the other’s perspective and figure out how to make them win. One good response is “That’s an interesting idea…,” which can give you think time and time to learn…not argue. Take 5 seconds—to pause and think.