18 November 2009

Consensus at all Cost?

Conflict DiamondsImage by markusthorsen via Flickr

It would be a rare community that survived great change - or small change, or even no change at all - without conflict. Communities are hotbeds of intrigue, egos and differing personal agendas, so it stands to reason that somewhere along the line people are going to cross swords.

As I see it, its not entirely a bad thing. If managed properly conflict provides opportunity for growth.

Why is it then, that many community groups seek to impose consensus at all cost? Why do we make it so difficult for people to stand up and say what they honestly believe? Why do we think that to do great things we have to all like each other? Why is it so hard to tell people when they are not doing a good job?

Surely a strong, reslilient community that truly embraces diversity is one that has realised that true consensus cannot be reached without some degree of conflict?

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