The Beauty of Disagreement

By Paul Joiner

The Beauty of Disagreement
Disagreement can be beautiful if seen the right way.

 

No team can work together on any one project without disagreement arising at some point in the concept, planning, or execution of it.

 

To most, disagreement is disruptive, but it doesn't have to be. Disagreeing is a beautiful refiner of ideas and outcomes. It causes us to stop and think twice, consider the matter from another’s viewpoint, defer to a stronger team member, gain consensus, draw stronger conclusions, and make more confident decisions. It gives us the benefit of other’s strengths where we are weak, and allows us to contribute our strengths to help overcome the weaknesses of others. Ultimately, it is what turns a group of independently operating individuals into a cohesive, effective, and productive team.'

 

Disagreement is healthy, and only those with a healthy awareness and understanding of their Adventure Style will not allow a disagreement to sabotage what is best for them, or their team.

 

Let's first look at where disagreements threaten each of our Adventure Styles, how this effects us, and why we react the way we do when challenged. Then, we will take a look at how disagreements refine and complete each of the Adventure Styles and harness a more mature outcome when seeing conflict as constructive. 

 

If you've not yet unlocked the insights of The Four Adventure Styles, you will want to check out MEET THE FOUR ADVENTURE STYLES on this site. Or, for a more in-depth study download, THE ADVENTURE STYLES: 24 Ways to Discover You, Understand Others, and Master Life!

 

Now let's dive into the Beauty of Disagreement!

 

No matter how valuable disagreement can be, it is never an easy process to experience. So let's begin with a look at where disagreement threatens each of us according to our Adventure Style:

 

Adventurer Style behaviors that come into play when not understanding the beauty of a disagreement:

 

How Disagreement Can Be Taken As A Threat

Explorer Disagreement threatens their ideals concerning the project.
Trailblazer Disagreement threatens their place in the project.
Navigator Disagreement threatens their pace for the project.
Traveler Disagreement threatens their experience in the project.

 

How Disagreement Can Be Taken Operationally

Explorer Needing to be emotionally connected, they take disagreement personally because it challenges their insight: You've attacked my purpose!
Trailblazer Wanting to be in charge, they take disagreement personally because it challenges their authority: You've attacked my role!
Navigator Needing to be right, they take disagreement personally because it challenges their structure: You've attacked my plans!
Traveler Wanting to please, they take disagreement personally because it challenges their contribution: You've attacked my significance!

 

How Disagreement Can Be Taken Too Far Emotionally

Explorer They take disagreement emotionally too far when they respond with an intense air of justice and vindication.
Trailblazer They take disagreement emotionally too far when they respond with intense stubbornness and insubordination.
Navigator They take disagreement emotionally too far when they respond with rigidity and indifference.
Traveler They take disagreement emotionally too far when they respond with an intense need for empathy and validation.

 

How Disagreement Can Be Taken Too Personally 

Explorer Disagreeing with them makes them feel unnecessary.
Trailblazer Disagreeing with them makes them feel unappreciated.
Navigator Disagreeing with them makes them feel undervalued.
Traveler Disagreeing with them makes them feel unaccepted.

 

As you can see, unhealthy view of disagreement can really splinter a team’s cohesiveness  and ultimate productivity.

 

However, if each Adventurer Style can recognize the beauty of disagreement, and how it benefits them, then they will welcome the questions, debate, suggestions, and alternative views.

 

In fact, most Adventurer Styles will come to embrace the strength other LIFE APPROACHES brings to their success.

 

Adventurer Style behaviors that come into play when understanding the beauty of a disagreement:

 

How Disagreement Can Be A Great Truth Serum

Explorer I can't do all things well.
Trailblazer I must sometimes get out of the way.
Navigator I don't always have the best way.
Traveler I must not focus on the moment but the momentum.

 

How Disagreement Can Be Helpful

Explorer The more others are involved, the greater insight I will gain to ensure my dreams are realized.
Trailblazer The more I listen to others, the greater impact this project will have.
Navigator The more information presented, the more criteria I will have to create an effective plan.
Traveler The more honest input expressed, the more I will be able to find approval for a job well done!

 

How Disagreement Can Bring Great Realization

Explorer My ideas will be realized only to the degree in which I realize my limitations. I know many things, but not everything. I can do most things, but am not the best at all things!
Trailblazer Drive doesn't always mean know how. Power is necessary to start, but precision is necessary to win. I make things happen, but perhaps greater things can happen!
Navigator Structure is the framework to accomplishing goals, but not always in cultivating winning ideas. I believe a plan is necessary, but I must wait for the right time when the plan becomes a necessity.
Traveler My desire for a working environment of consensus and cooperation makes me run from issues of disagreement. However, working through disagreement doesn't have to be confrontational, but constructive.

 

How Disagreement Can Be Beautiful

Explorer You can gain more insight into the world around you when you listen to the insight of others around you.
Trailblazer You can achieve more of your goals by welcoming others to speak openly and honestly into your agenda.
Navigator You can better bring more brilliant structure to the world when you realize the world thrives in living color and not in black and white.
Traveler You can find deep significance by addressing life head-on and facilitating the situation with your natural ability to smooth over differences.

 

As we have learned, disagreement doesn't have to be painful, but can be profitable.  Tensions between the four Adventure Style's Life Approaches can be frustrating at times, but once you understand  and anticipate how each member of your team will approach the task before you, you will can gracefully work through the areas where you differ.

 

The next time someone disagrees with you, don't get defensive, but be offensive! Use their difference of opinion to your advantage:

  • Listen to what others are saying.
  • Keep your emotions out of the discussion.
  • Examine their suggestions to see if can smooth the edges of a weakness you have.
  • Embrace a new idea.
  • Learn from the disagreement.

 

There will be times when your position is the right position, no matter the opposition. But if you, and your team, have a goal of using disagreements to expose the right outcome, then you will come to a collective agreement on the correct course of action.



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