There’s an interesting show on fox called Lie to me (http://www.fox.com/lietome/). The idea behind the show is that anytime someone lies there are tell tell signs. Those signs may not be noticeable to the normal person, but to the trained eye, they are there. Interesting concept, and I’m sure to a certain degree true.
What intrigues me is there is a character on the show that “doesn’t lie”. Not only does he not lie, but he says whatever is on his mind regardless of potential embarrassment. Which got me thinking….What if a person were to be honest. I’m not talking about walking up to a person and telling them “You’re ugly” or “You’re fat” or “[insert putdown here]”. I’m talking about when someone asks “what do you think?” or how about the classic “How are you today?” that the response is honest and heartfelt. Not meant to harm, not meant to insult, but honest. I think it would be an interesting experiment for one day just to see what would happen.
Does this mean I’m suggesting that everyone lies now? Well, maybe not “lies” so to speak, but for the most part everyone filters the truth to make it more palletable for those receiving the “truth”.
This is also tied into the idea about conflict and creativity. There is a book From Conflict to Creativity that suggests that in order to get to a productive and creative environment there must be some conflict. The bad thing about conflict is that it usually end up with feelings being hurt. For conflict to lead to creativity, there must be a willingness to let go of feelings and be open to honest and heartfelt suggestions.
It is not an easy thing to do.
It is easy to get invested in ideas and projects, it is NOT easy to accept or admit that those ideas and projects are no longer viable. The real question is how to create a workgroup environment that allows for honesty, conflict, and creativity while leaving feelings on the outside. I believe the key is in the group membership and building trust within that group. That trust can be built by various means, but it ultimately ends with the members of the groups being able to trust that they will all be honest with each other and with each others ideas. Not for seperate agendas, not to tear down or harm, not to be mean and vicious, but simply to be honest and heart felt about the ideas brought up for discussion. Hmm sounds idealistic, doesn’t it? Well, it can exist, it’s not easy, but it can exist.