HomeVolume 9June 2024 Navigating disagreements


DR. ICHAK ADIZES shares his time honored approach to improving relationships among different types of personalities in the business setting. Especially, he focuses on what is needed when disagreements occur, in order to foster a culture of collaboration during differences.


It is very common to encounter moments of disagreement among team members in corporate and business meetings. These instances, while natural, can sometimes escalate tensions and disrupt the flow of productive discussion. Understanding how to manage disagreements effectively is essential for fostering a culture of collaboration and achieving organizational goals. Drawing insights from the Adizes Methodology, we can explore strategies for navigating disagreements constructively.

Individuals with different behavioral styles approach disagreement in varying ways. For instance, those with an Entrepreneur (E) style are often characterized by their inclination toward debate and exploration of diverse perspectives. When faced with disagreement, an E may perceive it as a challenge to their authority, or a signal to end the discussion prematurely. This reaction stems from their commitment to thorough examination and passionate advocacy for their viewpoints.

It’s essential to recognize, however, that disagreement does not necessarily signify a desire to halt discussion entirely. Instead, it may indicate a differing opinion or the identification of an alternative perspective. Individuals expressing disagreement may still be open to further exploration and dialogue.

So, how can organizations navigate disagreements effectively?

Disagreement can catalyze deeper exploration or clarification of ideas. When disputes arise, individuals with Producer (P) or Admistratator (A) styles can be crucial in summarizing the decision under consideration and confirming that all relevant factors have been addressed. If consensus is reached that further discussion is futile, the responsibility shifts to the decision-maker.

In non-critical scenarios, individuals may choose to implement a decision despite their disagreement. Conversely, for judgments of greater significance, they may opt to proceed with implementation while formally recording their dissent. In cases where a decision directly conflicts with their judgment, individuals may consider resigning from their position rather than implementing it.

By acknowledging differing
perspectives and leveraging them as
opportunities for growth,
organizations can cultivate a culture of collaboration and innovation.

Ultimately, effective disagreement management requires a balanced consideration of the decision’s value and the potential impact of dissent. By embracing the principles of the Adizes Methodology, organizations can foster a respectful dialogue and continuous learning culture, ensuring that disagreements contribute to organizational growth rather than division.

Navigating disagreements within organizational settings requires a nuanced understanding of individual styles and a commitment to constructive dialogue. By acknowledging differing perspectives and leveraging them as opportunities for growth, organizations can cultivate a culture of collaboration and innovation.

Just thinking and feeling,

Ichak Adizes.webp

P.S. Readers unfamiliar with the concepts from this article are encouraged to explore Dr. Adizes' work, Mastering Change, for deeper insights.

Source: From Dr. Adizes's Blog: Communication Problems


Ichak Adizes

Ichak Adizes

Dr. Adizes is widely acknowledged as one of the world’s leading management experts. He has received 21 honorary doctorates and is the author of almost 30 books that have been translated into 36 languages. Dr. Adizes is recognized by Lead... Read More