Beware of Idea Piggies

Have you ever met an Idea Piggy?

You know, it's that person in your office that whenever you share an idea with them they just have to add one detail so that it's their idea?

It's a slight form of idea stealing…

Or, taking the credit.
Or, saying I'm smarter than you.
Or, by adding my two cents to your idea it's now a better idea.

But really, They’re just turning an idea into a my-dea

Yep, I just wrote my-dea

While this behavior is undoubtedly not good for interpersonal relationships and company culture it still very much exists in today's business world.

So how do you live with people that are idea piggies?

To be fair - ideas given by an idea piggy can be good.

At the same time they can also be not so good.

Just a disclaimer.

Ideas are wonderful things. Never stop gathering great ideas. Some people are great sources of ideas.

What we’re trying to do is find a way to minimize the frustration of working with an Idea Piggy.

With that said, here are some ideas for dealing with the Idea Piggy in your life.

One - The easiest option at the end of the day is really to just fix you.

Honestly, just stop opening your mouth and blabbing out ideas all over the office.

If you just develop some emotional intelligence you'll be that much further towards eliminating Idea Piggy's from piggy-backing onto your brilliant ideas.

Two - Know when you need feedback.

Use your friends and people you trust as sounding boards to bounce ideas off of.

Don't share an idea with the Idea Piggy unless you really need to.

Three - If you need to talk to the idea piggy about your idea qualify the conversation.

Meaning, let the person know that you're looking for some feedback so that you can make the best possible decision.

Then, when they’re done speaking, thank them for their input and remove yourself from the conversation gracefully.

If you’re a more direct or transparent person then you you have one more option and that is to let the person know about their behavior.

Let them know what they’re doing.

For example.  You could say the following - Every time I share an idea with you it feels like you’re trying to one up it.  Can we talk about this?

At the end of the day there's really two main approaches to dealing with idea piggies.

One is to confront the piggy and get it out in the open.

Then going forward, stop them when they're doing it. 

Or option two.  Only talk to the Idea Piggy when you need then and then when you do qualify the conversation and own the decision.

That's all the wisdom I have for now.

Good luck!