How do we be wise in dealing with conflicts and disagreements?

Leadership Memo 2022-4

In my last 2 posts, I talked about if we want harmony we need to be empathetic, and we need to pay attention to what is in our hearts because what is in our hearts is linked directly to the words we use and how we say them. Unfortunately, most conflicts are caused by what we say and how we say them. Today I want to focus on disagreement.

First, if I may be so bold, never let differences divide us. Instead, we should celebrate those differences.

You may ask, “but what about all those differences that annoy me?” “How about people who irritate me to no end?”

I’m so glad you asked. I would suggest welcoming with open arms those who don’t see things the way you do. And don’t jump all over them every time they do or say something you don’t agree with. Remember, they have their own history to deal with. Treat them gently.

At work, at home, or anywhere, be quick to listen and slow to anger when you have a disagreement. Why? Because most people tend to look at how far a person has to go rather than recognizing how far they’ve already come.

If you knew how much someone had already overcome in life, you’d probably be rejoicing with them instead of criticizing them for where they are now.

When you have a conflict with someone whose background you don’t know, don’t dismiss them or judge them for behavior that you don’t understand. Stop thinking, “What is wrong with this person?” Instead, ask, “What happened to them?”

Someone’s behavior might be shaped by trauma or crisis. Hurt people hurt people. When you find someone who’s hurting other people, if you dig deep enough, you’ll find that they also have been hurt.

The people that you think deserve your kindness the least are those who need the most massive doses of love. Show grace in disagreement. Offer empathy and compassion instead of judgment.

Second, get the whole story before jumping to conclusions.

A proverb says, “Do not let wisdom and understanding out of your sight, preserve sound judgment and discretion.”

Without all the information you need, jumping to conclusions leads to quick tempers and arguments. To lower the anger factor and have harmony with other people, you must learn to reserve judgment until you know all the facts and understand the whole story.

Another proverb says, “Spouting off before listening to the facts is both shameful and foolish.”

Don’t be quick to condemn or criticize. Don’t assume you know people’s motivation, because you probably don’t. Don’t decide before knowing all the facts.

When you wait for the whole story, you develop the compassion to love well.

So, to deal with disagreement, show grace and be wise and wait for the whole story.

Latest happenings:

1. Join me on April 28 at Aginext Conference 2022 as I dare you to jump onto the Trojan Horse to lead your agility adoption. If you choose to accept the dare, register here. Since you subscribe to my newsletter, I’m giving you a 15% discount. Promo code: MC_15

2. In the past months, “Our Agile Tales” has been hosting a series of podcast called “Agile @ Tesla”. The 11th and final episode was released last week! You can listen to the podcast on Spotify, Apple, Amazon, Google, Stitcher or you can click here. We have been talking to Joe Justice, discussing Elon Musk’s drive to innovate quickly, resulting in tangible organizational agility. The conversation builds on each other, so if you didn’t listen from episode 1, you may want to go back to the previous episodes to get some background and understanding. So far, we’ve discussed:

  • HR (Episodes 1-2)
  • Finance (Episodes 3-4)
  • Management (Episode 5)
  • Planning & Measurement (Episode 6)
  • Product Development: Hardware, Software, Design, Supplier, Government Certification (Episodes 7-9)
  • Specifically “Agile” (Episode 10)
  • This time, we are all about the Ways of Working.

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