Recently, I tweeted the following:
“The Law of the Out: the bigger the out (or backdoor) you give someone to take…the less they’ll feel the need to take it”
One person responded:
“I think people get too many outs. So many regrets later for not taking the chance.”
I responded in two tweets. The first one was:
“My suggestion is to try and see that tweet in the context in which it was intended. Remember, there’s a time and place for most everything.”
My follow-up, however, was the one more specific to this post:
“I’ll also suggest to you that to the degree you try and pressure someone to do what you think is in their best interest, they will resist.”
In other words, you are not giving them the “out” or “backdoor” in order for them to take it. But, rather that they feel comfortable enough to not feel the need to take it. Of course, if they feel it is in their best interest to do so, they will. But, they would have anyway. Or, had they instead capitulated to your demands because they felt pressured to do so, they would have then had to either go back on their word or perhaps they would have sabotaged the process.
It reminds me of one of my favorite sayings from the brilliant Dondi Scumaci that, “compliance will never take you where commitment can go.”
Let it be their decision and — if they make the decision to proceed — they will feel good about it because it was their decision, not yours.
And, the best way you can can increase the odds of this happening is to make the option for them not to do it, very clear.