Monday, June 21, 2010

Systems Ju-jitsu Part 5: Tactic 2. Join the resistance

This week’s Systems Ju-jitsu tactic is called Join the Resistance. This tactic is in the true spirit of Ju-jitsu, rather than taking on opponents directly, redirect and join them! The tactic is as simple as agreeing with critics and siding with the enemy. Simply, this tactic removes the adversarial stance and avoids a battle of wills. As they say, “It takes two to tango,” so, just refuse to dance. In times of anxiety the reactivity will sometimes take the form of pursuit in the form of criticism. In other words, someone will “make it personal.”

Recently, when I was accused of mismanagement during a small crisis I publicly agreed with the accuser. That essentially avoided making the issue personal (which was the intent of the accuser) and redirected the conversation to addressing the problem (which in this case, wasn’t me). Once, when I was accused of appearing pretentious I replied, “But I am pretentious. It’s my defining characteristic.” In both instances we avoided a battle of wills and avoided an overfocus on “message content” and moved on to deal with the real matters at hand.

Next week’s System Ju-jitsu tactic: “Kick Up the Reactivity”

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