Leadership Pathway #109: Respecting Diverse Paths

A recent conversation reminded me how diversity of opinion can be both uncomfortable and productive. It can raise our ire and challenge our thinking. If we are open to its merit, it can cause us to pause long enough to examine our personal experience and to consider others’ realities and thoughts. Not a bad thing.

As this particular discussion about leadership style unfolded, it became evident to me that my individual style and approach were not a fit with this manager’s beliefs. His experiences have led him to value tough mindedness, confrontation, and a strong hand. He personally wants to be pushed and confronted, and believes he has grown from the tough mindedness shown him. I am sure that he has.

I know another manager who is all about building friendly relationships with her team members. She has developed an open door policy and a “let’s get to know each other” style. Her personality is very humorous and light-hearted, and I always feel a connection of camaraderie when I am around her.

I believe that I can grow from establishing an understanding of both of these styles. It is in seeking information about each others’ experiences that we come to a better sense of their perspectives. By appreciating where their unique paths have led them, we share a greater chance of opening ourselves to their individual strengths. And in resisting judgment, we also open our minds to finding common ground.

Coaching Inquiries: Do you look for things to appreciate in others? Do you enjoy getting to know people with backgrounds that are different than yours? Are you more likely to tune into the individual strengths of others, or to discount them because of divergent philosophies or styles? How can you open your mind and heart to greater acceptance of others?

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May you be filled with goodness, peace, and joy.

Kate Kriynovich (Kate@LifeTrekCoaching.com)
LifeTrek Coaching International
Columbus, OH

Telephone: 614-488-4659
Fax: 240-465-5848

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