06/05/2014 - H. Venkatesh, CMO, Baehal Software Ltd., Bengaluru asks: Difference of opinion "When there is a difference of opinion, how do you influence instead of using authority, especially to someone who is junior. He may agree at the face level, but may not agree whole heartedly. Same way, how do we invite different opinion from someone junior?" Answer:
Each person’s opinion comes from their own experience. One does not have an idea of where the other person is coming from. By listening to the junior person’s opinion non-judgmentally, you can understand where he is coming from. You can para-phrase what he said, which will help him realize that you have understood his opinion. Then you can explain whether his idea will work and what your opinion/idea is . This will convince him about your idea and that you value his opinion. This may take a bit of your time. But it will help to build relationship in the long run.06/05/2014 - Priya. R, Officer, SBI asks: Communication "My boss is not very communicative – speaks in a very curt and rude way. Most of us feel uncomfortable and don’t feel like talking to him. I feel resentment when dealing with him. This puts a lot of stress in our work place. How do we deal with this?" Answer:
It is indeed difficult when people are not pleasant or courteous to each other in the work place. What is important is to realize two things. One, your boss is behaving in a way he knows and can. We cannot change that. Two, we need not become like him. Instead of him influencing the work atmosphere, all of you can reverse it by being courteous even when he is not. How people behave is their problem, how we feel is our challenge. You can choose to be indifferent to the coldness and say “ that does not matter”. Definitely, resentment is some thing you can drop. To quote Nelson Mandela “ Resentment is like drinking poison and then hoping it will kill your enemies”.