Category Archives: Handling Disagreements

Who has the right of way?

Do I expect as much freedom as the next person? That sounds reasonable but there is a problem with that expectation. Freedom and entitlement to freedom only ever look good on paper. In reality, one person’s freedom is likely to infringe on another person’s freedom. Think about how people decide who is to go first when two

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The Doubter

People have all kinds of attitudes for all kinds of reasons. Those who doubt the ideas of others may struggle with a pride that doesn’t allow them to endorse any idea that didn’t originate from them. Pride is a tough attribute to overcome and it takes a bold leader to address it on a team. Fear may

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Disagree? Or lack confidence?

I always find it interesting to see how different teammates respond to challenges. I have found that many of the naysayers in the initial discussions are not saying no because they don’t agree with the direction. They cast doubt because they secretly doubt themselves and their ability to step up to the challenge. Usually what ends up

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Walking the Line Well

Teammates that never voice their dissent cannot be considered great because they are not contributing with their unique insight. While their idea may not be completely embraced it can be considered and lead to the idea that does end up being the chosen solution. Every idea is a brick on the path to the direction the team

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The Art and Science of Dissent

There is an art and science to operating on a team with healthy dissent. Not everyone is going to agree. The trick is knowing how to disagree and remain a great teammate. Speaking up only takes courage when we disagree. Be courageous. Expressing dissent without coming across as condescending or arrogant takes the tact of an adult

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“I told you so…”

When the team is moving in a direction that I didn’t agree with but I have chosen to support, I must understand that my concerns and misgivings may not have as much influence as those that are in agreement of the direction. It is vital that I continue to contribute to team discussions because my perspective is

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How do I know when I am not supportive?

When I cannot help myself from looking for others that might share my disagreement, I am in danger of harming the team dynamic for the sake of my preference or agenda. If I have gotten to the point that my disagreement has taken the form of a moral judgement, then I must think about why I would

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How do I know I can be supportive?

I know that I can be a great teammate to those that I disagree with when I am not compelled to share my disagreement with others. When I can simply contribute to a conversation that decides direction and agree to move forward despite my personal feelings, I know I can continue to contribute to the team’s efforts.

Naive Influence

Some people who have little experience with healthy conflict do not know how to disagree well and assume that conflict is a sign that something is terribly wrong with a team. Their judgement and response to conflict can prevent a team from intentionally dragging conflict and dissent into the light. Great teams do not allow those that

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It’s not enough to agree to disagree…

All of us disagree with some portion of the team’s decided direction at some point. My quality as a teammate is best determined in my choices after a disagreement. Can I execute a plan that I disagree with? Is my cooperation and civility contingent on my agreement or the agreement of others? Part of the role of

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