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Organizational dissent - Organizational benefits



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Organizational dissent - Organizational benefits

  • Upward dissent serves as an important monitoring force and allows the organization to identify problems and issues before they become damaging.

Organizational dissent - Individual benefits

  • Employees who express upward dissent seem more satisfied, to have better work relationships, and to identify with their organization.

Organizational dissent - Upward dissent strategies

  • In 2002, Kassing found that once an individual decides to strategically express dissent, they use five different categories: direct-factual appeal, Repetition (rhetorical device)|repetition, solution presentation, circumvention, and threatening resignation.

Organizational dissent - Direct-factual appeal

  • When an employee uses factual information derived from physical evidence, knowledge of organizational policies and practices, and personal work experience, they use the direct-factual appeal strategy. This strategy is considered active and constructive because the employees seek evidence and base their assumptions on facts, evidence, and first-hand experience. Employees avoid using verbal abuse|verbal attacks and unsupported data.

Organizational dissent - Repetition

  • Repetition (rhetorical device)|Repetition involves expressing dissent about a topic/issue repeatedly at different points in time

Organizational dissent - Solution presentation strategy

  • The solution presentation strategy is deemed as active–constructive since an employee will provide solutions, with or without supporting evidence. This allows the supervisor to be receptive to the expressed dissent and indicates that effort has been put into solving the problem/issue.

Organizational dissent - Circumvention

  • However, when used to express dissent regarding unethical practices it is considered active–constructive since the dissent is issue driven.

Organizational dissent - Threatening resignation

  • Threatening resignation can also be seen as both active–constructive and active–destructive. This strategy involves the employee threatening to resign as a form of leverage for obtaining responsiveness and action from supervisors and management. When used to express your concerns about unsafe and intolerable work conditions it is deemed constructive. However, this strategy will appear to be destructive when the managers view the threat as wikt:antagonistic|antagonistic and unprincipled.

Organizational dissent - Encouraging dissent in the workplace

  • There are some Illusion|tricks that leaders can utilize to develop their employees' Attitude (psychology)|attitudes, knowledge, and skills that are needed to foster constructive dissent.

Organizational dissent - Change decision-making focus

  • Leaders should focus on How I should make the decision instead of What decision should I make. In the end, if they perform the following steps the decision the leader should make will be obvious.

Organizational dissent - Encourage constructive conflict

  • Leaders need to ensure that Organizational conflict|conflict remains constructive. That is, they must stimulate task-oriented disagreement and debate while trying to minimize interpersonal conflict. Eilerman (2006) claims that the way conflict is handled will determine whether the outcome is constructive or destructive. According to Roberto (2005) leaders can create constructive conflict by taking concrete steps before, during, and after a critical decision process.

Organizational dissent - Establish ground rules

  • Before the process begins, leaders can establish ground rules for how people should interact during the deliberations, clarify the role that each individual will play in the discussions, and build mutual respect

Organizational dissent - Intervene when necessary

  • During deliberations, leaders can intervene when debates get heated

Organizational dissent - Reflect on the process

  • After a decision process ends, leaders should reflect on the process and try to derive lessons learned regarding how to manage conflict constructively

Organizational dissent - Establish a supportive climate

  • Bennis (2004) emphasizes that corporate leaders must promise their followers that they will never be devalued or punished because they express dissent. All too often in the past, organizations would marginalize or termination of employment|terminate any employee who voiced an opposing view. Additionally, leaders should reward dissent and punish conflict avoiders. Anyone who clearly withholds a dissenting view only to obstruct the implementation later should be held responsible.

Organizational dissent - Establish a supportive climate

  • Kassing's (2000) research found that when leaders emphasize workplace freedom of speech, employees openly and clearly express dissent to audiences that are responsible for organizational adjustment

Organizational dissent - Situations that may undermine a leader's efforts

  • Even if a leader takes all the steps indicated above they must be aware of four situations that can undermine their efforts (Roberto, 2005).

Organizational dissent - Crowding out response time

  • Leaders should avoid crowding out opportunities to respond or discuss policies. Overloading an agenda (meeting)|agenda can decrease the amount of time that is available for an individual to express their view.

Organizational dissent - Appointing the same devil's advocate every time

  • Employing the same person as devil's advocate can cause the view that it is an empty ritual. It is seen as being done for procedural reasons instead of seeking dissenting views.

Organizational dissent - Allowing too much time for subgroups

  • Leaders should not allow employee subgroups to have too much time before coming together as a Groups of people|group. Doing so can cause the employees to become attached to an argument and as a result they may not be open to other ideas.


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