Picture this. You are in a large room , full of judgemental people. Every single twitch,scratch or nod triggers a perception about you. And as if all this pressure was not enough it is your turn to speak. To further complicate matters, you realise that the content you are about to deliver is contrary to the popular belief in the room.To make matters worse, you know the naiveté quotient in the room is quite high as well.And worst of all, there is precedence of you being proven wrong.
Now where does that leave your confidence? Where does that leave your anxiety quotient? What choices will you make? What road will you take?
Its not that others have or dont or wont go through similar situations.They do, and have.But you realise that all of them have chosen the easier path of mass approval or mass consensus.And your inner belief if stated will make you stand out like a sore thumb. So is it smart for you to do that ? Or do you get into compliance mode?
There are two ways of looking into this – neither of them is right or wrong.That is why the corporate world is grey as most would agree. ( note : mass consensus)
So heres my grey take.
You can gauge the audience and design your response to be favourable or adverse.
If you have a naive audience, then be careful to not sound too intelligent,as your thoughts and statements could be misconstrued.You should sound simple and easy to understand. If you have an intelligent audience then make your point with well thought through points,which can warrant an intelligent question from the audience.
Dont get too caught up with trying to prove yourself right in either of the situations.Dont doubt your convictions too quickly,but sometimes it is wise to know the right battles to pick and fight. Remember winning every battle sounds good but is very tiring, you might not have the energy to win the war.So pace your actions well.Balance it out, by sometimes playing to the gallery and sometimes balancing it out.
Think about it,if a leader is unidirectional or uni-dimentional then he or she is ill equipped to lead a diverse work force, which is today’s reality.The goal is to become multi faceted,follower and original at the same time.Popular and standout at the same time. Yes you would say it is the hot bed for dichotomy and diplomacy and I would say would it rather not be that way?