It is inevitable that from time to time you will face a clash of perspectives with your colleagues. Is this a good or bad things? Well ultimately it depends on how you handle the situation and if diplomacy not ego takes control of what awaits.  Parker Palmer once wrote that ‘we teach who we are’, and as such a range of values and beliefs which shape our views come into play within our classrooms. So, with this in mind, how do we work through the challenges when you and your colleagues don’t agree on the ‘how’ of what we do. Here are some things to consider which might support you.

Be prepared. Whenever you propose an idea there are certain to be people who do not understand the idea, do not like the idea, or simply don’t like you. So, prepare yourself for objections. Consider who will say what and why. For example, one colleague may say your initiative is cost prohibitive, another might question its efficacy, and another might wonder about its timing. Develop a clear position on why you believe in what you believe in but be open to hearing their perspective

Be generous. Compliment others for the constructive feedback they are offering. You can do this even when the criticism is more critical than helpful because it shows that you are someone who is above criticism. 

Be patient. Few, if any, will embrace your idea as much as you have. After all, we all have our own agendas. So be realistic with your timeframe. Know that it will take time and effort to persuade others to adopt your idea or in fact for you to adopt their ideas. You will hear similar counter-arguments voiced multiple times; expect it. Refine your ideas to reflect that you are listening to others. And remember that patience also requires that you keep your cool. Keeping your cool does not mean you roll over in the face of your opposition. Channel your energy into your idea, and you will stay cool while your idea stays hot.

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