There are so many examples of people avoiding conflict and the reasons for these are many and often deep rooted.
The first few months following the Brexit vote was a classic case. I remember the word Brexit itself becoming the Voldemort (thank you JK Rowling, such a great name!) of the work place because it brought out drastically opposing opinion.
Then what happened?
Divided opinion led to the potential for people to actually and seriously fall out. The option for debate soon went out of the window, it seemed a more prudent option to avoid dialogue altogether as the ensuing conflict too easily morphed into a relationship destroyer.
We might say to ourselves Well, it’s OK to avoid conflict if it might lead to this kind of outcome…? Surely though, before we decide to put a blanket over expressing different opinions due to the risk it might pose to relationships, perhaps we should first at least identify the positives.
The space in which opinions on a subject differ is where room exists to grow a solution.
It certainly is in business where space exists to become a differentiator.
That’s the place where we can explore previous experience and look to learn from it, or where we can prospect for innovative ideas.
Expressing differing opinions allows the possibility of a different outcome
We are more likely to try and avoid potentially destroying relationships than expressing differing ideas which can be built upon, because it’s too easy for defensiveness and negativity to get in the way. We’ve all been in those workplace situations where a corrosive atmosphere has dissolved the trust between it’s members and stopped a team moving forward,
If we consider that all of that is likely to be coming from a place of judgement, could we find a way to remove that?
The answer is yes.
Is it important that we remove it?
In business and in this current economical environment, I’d argue that now, more than ever, it’s imperative that within our leadership teams we do so.
How else will we move forward?
Rather than waiting, holding off just in case, we should be embracing the creative edge that healthy conflict, the ability to safely express differing opinions without judgement, enables.
We can show you a new way to get fit for healthy conflict, meaning you have the potential to get more than you’ve ever gotten.