Do you try to avoid conflict at all cost? Is disagreement seen as negative in your organization? Let me dispel this myth. Conflict isn’t so bad. Indeed, it can be positive…
Do not think of knocking out another person’s brains because he differs in opinion from you. It would be as rational to knock yourself on the head because you differ from yourself ten years ago. – Horace Mann
Conflict Is Good
The Lazy Leader believes conflict is good because it:
- Leads to better team work,
- stimulates new ideas,
- provides reason for discussion, and
- is a catalyst for change.
Conflict leads to better team work
Conflict and criticism are unavoidable. They are a fact of life. But we can choose to deal with them positively.
Provocation is on the opposite lane of resolution. – Toba Beta
The inherent purpose of criticism is to draw our attention to something that needs change or improvement. Or to put things back on course. However, simply stating how you feel about someone or something is unhelpful. Indeed, criticizing someone or something is difficult and risky and needs to be done constructively.
Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfils the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things. – Winston Churchill
The lazy leader is assertive and makes their views clear. Their honesty and openness puts them in control. The team benefits because it is learning and improving. And in time we gain trust because the team welcomes criticism as a natural part of its development.
Conflict stimulates new ideas
I have said that disagreement is unavoidable and creates a potential for teams to evolve and grow. My view is to encourage conflict.
Ideas stand in the corner and laugh while we fight over them. – Marty Rubin
When the team questions and challenges things as they are, it begins to innovate. It creates competition. It encourages people to communicate with precision because everyone wants to be understood.