You’ll win. They’ll win. Happy happy.

Is it self-serving to keep the people you work with happy because you get more and better work out of a happy team?

Whatever way you feel about the answer to that question, it doesn’t change the fact that happy people do work better.

Which is why, I believe, the greatest of care must be taken when handling feedback of a person’s idea. Especially when you think someone’s idea is “stupid.” Doubly so when you’re in a hurry. And thricely so if you’re the one who asked for their opinion.


Ideas carry tiny pieces of identity.

Which is why you cannot wholly detach someone’s idea from the person themselves.

How you respond to their idea has a direct correlation to how you make them feel. And how do you want to make them feel?

Happy. Remember?

Because when everyone is happy, you’ll get a free flow of ideas. And it is quantity of ideas that’ll give you the best solution the fastest.

So, always tread with grace when responding to ideas. Even if it’s a dumb idea, you can still respond in such a way as to dignify the progenitor.

You’ll win. They’ll win. And everyone will be happy happy.

– Zac Smith, VC