Being Right vs Being Effective

We have all encountered this situation: you disagree with someone over some nontrivial issue -a friend, a classmate, a coworker – and you KNOW you are right and they are just so wrong. So you make sure they know it over and over again … but they still won’t budge.

The question you have to ask yourself here is: “Am I more concerned with being RIGHT or being EFFECTIVE?” If it’s the former, then keep doing what you’re doing. They’ll see the brillance in your ideas, I’m sure. Meanwhile, nothing will move forward.

If it’s the latter, then I advise you change tactics. Admit your view has flaws. Think about how their values affect their decision making. Ask someone they trust to talk to them. Provide some data from the real world that solidifies your stance. Or just let them have this issue and use the chits elsewhere.

Being right is never enough. No one wants to hear “Well it would have worked if s/he had just listened to me”. It is YOUR responsibility to ensure the right outcome.

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Jason Shen

Jason is a tech entrepreneur and advocate for Asian American men. He's written extensively and spoken all over the world about how individuals and organizations develop their competitive advantage. Follow him at @jasonshen.

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