According to Forbes, “no one likes a pushy person.” But a little pushback can bring new ideas to the table. However, candid leaders know when it’s time to step back, give space, or stop pitching altogether. You want to make sure your peers have breathing room and feel comfortable sharing their feedback or ideas.

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Reflect on how to pause and stop talking

Learning how to pause and stop talking is fundamental in developing and honing your leadership skills. Start by simply taking a moment to reflect.

Is pushing back on ideas a good or bad technique?

Exercises to pause and stop talking

Now, it's time to put your reflection into action. Finding opportunities to implement your leadership skills can allow you to pause and stop talking.

  • Read the room when pitching an idea. If you notice you aren’t getting your team’s buy-in based on body language and strong push back, consider tabling the pitch and circle back later.
  • Give your peers space after relaying feedback. Depending on what kind of feedback was given, allow a few days for them to process the information before following up.
  • Uphold your fiduciary duty by acting in the best interests of your team. For example, if you have a conflict of interest with a project, it’s best to recuse yourself from weighing in on the discussion.

Additional resources to help you pause and stop talking

The Right (And Wrong) Way To Push Back Against An Unreasonable Boss
Dealing with a demanding manager can be tricky, but there is a way to stand-up for yourself while being tactful at the same time.
7 Ways To Push Back Without Being Pushy
You can push back without being pushy No one likes a pushy person. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t push back from time to time. In fact, if you don’t, your career will suffer and you’ll fail to build the trust you want from others - both in your work and [...]
Practical Tips for Overcoming Resistance
Use the techniques hostage negotiators use.

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‌Cover Photo by Dustin M. Myers