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Organizational structures often enable or highlight tension between areas of concern and focus, such as marketing, sales, delivery, and support. Ideally, these areas find ways to work together to fulfill the purpose of their organizations.
But when organizational leaders don’t address the tension of their differing viewpoints, the intersection of tension is unintentionally delegated to the people doing work. This ends up undermining the organization’s ability to deliver, satisfy customers, and succeed in the marketplace.
“Tension is a natural part of any organization.” – Susan Scott
“Creative tension is constructive. It’s purpose is to bring out the very best.” – Punit Renjen
“Tension between departments can be a major obstacle to organizational success. It can lead to missed deadlines, poor communication, and even sabotage. But it doesn’t have to be this way. With a little effort, tension between departments can be…turned into a positive force.” – John C. Maxwell
Try making tension (and/or trying to context switch due to lack of tension) transparent. Show how team morale might be impacted and the costs related to delays in decision making and context-switching.
What tension exists in your organization that isn’t being addressed?
The human element isn’t talked about enough when discussing how decisions are made within an organization. To dive more into the human element, check out our class on handling conflict:
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