The best ideas, optimal solution or wisest decisions rarely sprout from one mind. Yet it’s so easy for us to declare another person wrong. Often we do so before even taking the time to consider what others are bringing to the table. Surely our own thoughts are superior!
The truth is that all effective problem solving, teamwork and conflict resolution begins with an open mind, free of what we know or think we know. It is quite a tricky concept that goes against our nature of displaying our smarts and knowledge. Recognizing the possibility that we may not have all the facts and may not be the only one who is right is the key to meaningful collaboration.
This doesn’t mean you have to default to thinking you are wrong. It means you might not be the only one who is right. Let’s be honest, isn’t this usually the truth? Telling people they are wrong doesn’t create solutions, it creates rivals. Next time you are in a meeting that’s going nowhere, are in a heated argument or have to perform conflict resolution in the workplace, don’t try to come out as the victor. Instead, appreciate that different thoughts and experiences result in something greater than the sum of the parts. In doing so, you will create a platform for meaningful collaboration and likely find a better solution.
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