In the workplace, there are always differing opinions. This is a good thing. If your team doesn’t disagree with each other, it’s probably dysfunctional. Disagreeing can lead to success and the creation of big ideas. Here are a few keys to making sure your disagreements are productive.
When you disagree with someone, you usually latch on to something they’ve said that immediately bothers you. To make the situation as clear as possible, make sure to clearly and completely convey your feelings on the subject. Sometimes, we get caught up on a small detail of a larger problem. Find out how everyone feels and get everything out in the open.
Be careful with tone
When we feel attacked, we tend to get defensive. We’ve all experienced that feeling. If someone disagrees with something you’ve said, find out why. Don’t engage in a back and forth that will end up taking you down a path to debate and possibly even anger. Take your time with thoughtful responses so you can fully understand each other.
Be ready and don’t assume
Avoid preconceived notions when engaging someone in conversation. Be prepared to hear differing views, but don’t assume you know how the conversation is going to go. If you do, you can get defensive when you don ‘t really need to be. Start with a positive attitude and hopefully you’ll finish the conversation feeling accomplished even if you don’t completely agree.