Aug 19, 2013

Unity in Leadership Part 3: Unity Does Not Mean Unanimous Agreement

Matt Levy

Matt Levy

Unity in Leadership Part 3: Unity Does Not Mean Unanimous Agreement

We will not agree all the time. That’s OK. One of the challenges of building unity in your team is recognizing that unity does not mean unanimous. Unity is not a team of automatons that blindly follows every decision.

Too much agreement actually means something unhealthy is going on. The wise King Solomon had a lot to say about the healthy tension that’s required in any great relationship:

– “As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.”

– “A friend loves at all times and a brother is born for adversity.”

– “Faithful are the wounds of a friend, profuse are the kisses of an enemy.”

When iron strikes iron sparks fly, but the iron is ultimately sharper and stronger for it. Friends help one another see what we can’t on our own. We can accept criticism from friends that we’d never take from anyone else.  This is a good indicator of who our friends really are. They are coming from a place of love, not from a place of trying to be right.

Likewise any good team values improvement over unanimity. As you disagree you can hash out ideas and concepts, test them and refine them. You’re stronger for the arguments.

A good leader needs to recognize this, allow for it and ensure that your team can disagree well and still be united. Don’t be tempted to settle for unanimous decisions and think you’ve created unity.

If you have questions about disagreement and unity within your organization, post a comment below or connect with us on Twitter.

This is the 3rd blog post of the series on Unity in Leadership. If you missed the previous posts in this series, we recommend reading Part 1 and Part 2. We also encourage you check out Part 4, Part 5, and Part 6!

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