I recall talking with Phil from the marketing team. He was explaining some idea he had for the company website, probably related to a new customer tool. As usual I listened, made some suggestions, and told him that given some time we could definitely do that. Then he responded...
I like working with you. You never tell me that you can't do something.
That was it! It changed how I deal with development request in a profound way.
I will never say that I can't build something. I might suggest that it isn't worth the effort involved, or there are technical hurdles that I don't have immediate answers to, but I will never say that it can't be done.
In the course of my work I am often involved in discussions of product development. Inevitably someone will eventually say, "we can't do that". These words sound off bells and whistles in my head! I can't help but respond with the words, "why not?"
I think sometimes people like to stick with what they know, which is always the easy way out. But I am not wired that way. By firmly believing that anything can be done I feel empowered and unstoppable. I know that I don't have all of the answers but I can always learn what I don't know.