ArLyne's Diamonds

A running commentary of ideas

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Cosntructive Confrontation

This is a phrase Andy Grove used at Intel. Coming from an East European Jewish background, it comes from the manner in which Torah and Talmud are studied. It allows for the Jewish student to question, argue, offer divergent points of view. The belief is that not only does this style of learning teach you to think for yourself, it also allows for new perspectives.

We seem to be able to disagree with out political leaders - we are especially good at taking on our Presidents, but are chastised when we disagree with friends, relatives or neighbors. In our zeal to "go along to get along" we agree with decisions that are just plain wrong.

We even agree with decisions that hurt us - decrease our property values, increase our utilities bills, etc. And, those of us who dare - yes, dare - to question, are called malcontents who don't recognize how much our board are doing for us. Guess you realize by now, I'm having a disagreement with the board of my townhouse complex.

What have you learned about disagreement? Can you respectfully do it without losing the relationships? I hope so. I really hope so.


Re-activating my blog

Since I re-started my newsletter last year, I forgot to post to my blog. Sorry. I am going to start again - and hope you all "tune in" and share your ideas with me.

My blog is intended as commentary far more personal than that of my newsletter - which is designed for my professional contacts. Here, with your help, we can share some ideas about contemporary issues.

My latest - why can't people disagree with each other about issues without feeling the need to withdraw from a friendship?

I had some lovely friends here in my complex - they were originally from South Africa and believed that disagreement led to heavy confrontation - and possibly violence. Consequently, they avoided what they thought of as "confrontation" and I see as mild disagreement. Too bad.

I'm going to write more about this - under a different heading.