Ways to Deal with Dissenting Voices During a Meeting

Dissenting Voices

It doesn’t feel good to have your ideas rejected. When you present something and not a lot of people believed in you, it hurts. You will have a hard time accepting the fact that you’re in the minority. It’s even worse if you felt that you did well and your ideas are worth the try. 

As the company’s leader, you know how it feels. You’ve been there on your way to the top. You didn’t immediately become a leader whom everyone trusts. You had to prove your worth, and you got rejected several times. Therefore, if you have employees who felt bad after being among the dissenters, you should do something about it. They might lose motivation to do better in the future given the hard rejection.

Talk to them

There was a process before you decided to vote on the idea. Everyone on the table listened to the pitches, and decided based on what was presented. If it was a fair process, it’s good enough. Despite that, you should still talk to the dissenters. Let them know that you’re willing to listen. Perhaps, the ideas were misinterpreted or not given the chance to be fully explained. Let your employees know that you’re there to discuss the ideas further. They might not be used now, but they could be relevant in the future. Being heard by the team leader is helpful for a lot of people. 

Explain the side of the majority

If you voted with the majority in rejecting the idea, you should at least explain your vote. Point out the bad sides of the idea and why you didn’t believe in it. You should also highlight the strengths to make the employees feel that something good came out of it. Be open to a discussion or even have a friendly debate. It won’t change anything since the board has already voted, but it can help the employees in the future. You can also understand them better if they present ideas to you. 

Always open the floor for ideas

Always open the floor for ideas

If the idea wasn’t accepted by the body, it’s not the end of the road. Give your employees the chance to polish what has been done, and make it more presentable. Adjust the plan based on the recommendations. Next time, it might work. Let everyone know that you’re always willing to listen to these ideas, and you believe in what your employees are capable of.

Allow people to express frustration 

You can’t expect your employees to immediately accept the results. They worked hard on the idea and they also feel humiliated with how things turned out. Therefore, it’s okay to let them speak out and express frustration. Others won’t even want to be actively involved in the next projects, and it’s okay. They will come around and participate in the future. Don’t add fuel to the fire by making these employees feel that they failed.

You have a huge challenge in your hands, and you should make the most of it. Otherwise, employees will feel bad and not reach their potentials. 

Photo Attribution:

1st and featured image from https://www.thebalancecareers.com/thmb/n5HBSRlDTh-ZvwtkCxdukt_DhS4=/3425×3425/smart/filters:no_upscale()/three-women-in-office-having-an-argument-97720778-5b69e889c9e77c0025d0b7ad.jpg

2nd image from https://careeradvancementblog.com/dealing-with-dissenters/