Course blog for American University PERF-570, Fall 2014
I saw this article on Harvard Business Review and immediately thought of “The Advantage”. Remember Lencioni outlining his first discipline, “Building a Cohesive Leadership Team”, and one of the behaviors of that, “Mastering Conflict”? Well the HBR article has a very similar opinion: conflict is not a bad thing. However, Lencioni focuses on increasing conflict, where the HBR article concentrates on tactics for individuals who avoid conflict and confrontation.
As someone who does not like to spark controversy (even though there are times I should), the tips the author provides are seemingly useful for me. An important part of confrontation is about delivery of the message. Although at times it appears to be so, conflict should never be an attack. As stated, conflict is merely “presenting a different point of view even when it is uncomfortable”. Building a cohesive team requires openness, honesty, and a diversity of thinking, which is all sparked from conflict. The key to remember is that the conflict these authors mention is “healthy conflict”, not arguments that lead nowhere.
To anyone else like me who naturally tends to avoid conflict, what are your thoughts about the advice the HBR article outlines? Do you think those tips are helpful?
For anyone on the opposite end (shout out to all your conflict lovers), do you see yourself using any of the steps outlined in “The Advantage” or this article to master conflict? If not, what steps do you take in embracing conflict?