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David Marquet U.S Navy Speaker

March 11, 2015 by Speakers' Spotlight

Grow Your People: Plant A Dissenter

Captain David Marquet imagines a work place where everyone engages and contributes their full intellectual capacity, a place where people are healthier and happier because they have more control over their work–a place where everyone is a leader. A former US submarine captain and the author of the bestselling book, Turn Your Ship Around, David encourages leaders to “plant a dissenter” the next time you hold a meeting. Not sure what that means? Read on and watch above:

What is Dissent? Dissent simply means stating what you believe to be true, even (especially) if it is different from the group.

The next time you have a decision meeting plant a dissenter. Someone who disagrees with the decision being made at the meeting. The role for this person is to challenge the groups assumptions. Dissent won’t happen naturally, typically people are afraid to disagree with the group and/or the boss.

People conform for two main reasons:

  1. Because they want to fit in with the group and
  2. Because they believe the group is better informed than they are.

This is important for us to remember as we go throughout our day, having conversations with our teams.

When we make decisions we do not want to drive consensus we want to embrace dissent. Remember, whatever you do, when you make if safe to dissent you’ll hear more from your people, and make better decisions.

David Marquet/March, 2015