It is not entirely clear how long it will be before people are comfortable inhabiting meeting rooms again, even for very short and focussed interactions. Which raises some fundamental questions about how we go about having strategically important conversations. Our current reality changes how we facilitate, how we interact and how groups explore, unpack and resolve complex and messy questions. In trying to figure out alternative strategies, there are some fundamental problems that need to be solved.
We’ve all been challenged by that one person in the meeting who opposes everything, simply for the sake of opposing. Or because they’re afraid. Or because they just like to argue. The role of the devil’s advocate is challenged. It’s also challenging. But under the right circumstances, it can be hugely helpful.
We have a deeply ambivalent relationship with uncertainty. In part, we are hard-wired to like clarity, and black-and-white world-views are as tempting as they are dangerous. So when we are faced with situations where there are no clear answers or easy choices, we find ourselves squirming in acute discomfort.