If Your Team Agrees on Everything, Working Together Is Pointless
Collaboration is crumpling under the weight of our expectations. What should be a messy back-and-forth process far too often falls victim to our desire to keep things harmonious and efficient. Collaboration’s promise of greater innovation and better risk mitigation can go unfulfilled because of cultural norms that say everyone should be in agreement, be supportive, and smile all the time. The common version of collaboration is desperately in need of a little more conflict. You’ve probably been taught to see collaboration and conflict as opposites. In some cultures the language and imagery of teamwork is ridiculously idyllic: rowers in perfect sync, or planes flying in tight formation. There’s no point in collaboration without tension, disagreement, or conflict. It’s time to change your mindset about conflict. Unfortunately, our distaste for conflict is so entrenched that encouraging even modest disagreement takes significant effort.
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