If there’s been a theme to the conversations I’ve had with clients this year, it’s the growing cost they’re experiencing related to this bail-bruise dynamic. For one client, it undermines their inclusion and engagement efforts, effecting their ability to retain and compete for talent. With another, it undermines their innovation efforts. For a third privately-held company, it is complicating an ownership and leadership change. For a fourth, it’s a drag on their performance goals. So what is this bail-bruise dynamic, and what can you do so it doesn’t undermine your success as well.
We see bailing and bruising as being on opposite ends of a candor continuum. They represent a conversational version of the fight-flight response.
People whose “fight” response gets triggered in a conversation are likely to bruise, to dominate a conversation and speak in stronger, more unilateral language that can shut others down:
“That will never work…”
“Of course you’d take Maria’s side against mine…”
(Sarcastically) “Oh, that’s a GREAT idea…” Continue reading