3 Ways Silence is Misdiagnosed on a Team

Ron Edmondson | 2/28/2017 | Ron Edmondson
joseph76 (Posted by) Level 3
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Good communication is so important on a team. Equally important, if the team is to be healthy, is that everyone on the team has their thoughts and opinions heard.

I am a firm advocate that everyone on the team should have a vital role. It’s why I write so much about delegation and empowerment. If a leader believes in someone enough to have them on the team then they should believe that person brings something unique and valuable to the team.

Leaders - Everyone - Team - Opportunity - Voice

This also means leaders should want everyone on the team to have an equal opportunity to express themselves – to let their voice be heard.

Through the years of leading, I have learned there are a number of reasons a team may not share their opinions. It could be their introversion is more dominant than the extroverted atmosphere invites them to participate. (I can relate to this one personally.) It could also be, even in spite of what a leader says, there is a perception among the team of when one can speak. And, many other reasons.

Problem - Team - Dynamics - Opinion - Silence

The biggest problem for team dynamics, in my opinion, is how misunderstood silence can be. When someone doesn’t communicate, we may never get to the real reason – certainly not to the team dynamics – because we misdiagnose their quietness.

Here are 3 common ways silence is often misdiagnosed:

People - Person - Discussion - Discussion - Discussions

Some people falsely believe a person who isn’t communicating is not smart enough to join the discussion. They believe they can’t compete intellectually, or keep up with the current discussion fast enough. They may dismiss them from deeper discussions falsely believing they couldn’t keep up with others.

I have learned some of the smartest people are some of the quietest people. When we do hear from them it’s always valuable and helpful.

Some think the one not communicating doesn’t...
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