Working with leaders everyday, you get used to their concerns. Many of them use the word “alignment” as one of their main challenges when it comes to managing their workforce. They use time and energy to placate dissenting opinions, because they think they will get in their way: they tag them as “resistance to change”, “non optimal commitment”, “lack of alignment“ and so forth.
It is not disputed that humans working together need some kind of coordination to produce results. Moreover, when the parameters are stable in your industry, and if you have the successful products and methods, keeping on doing the same can be extremely profitable. You then try hard to get many people execute the same procedures over and over again. You strive for alignment.
However, if your environment somehow changes, keeping on doing the same may harm your business faster than you expect. Ignoring dissenting opinion may leave you blind to obvious threats or opportunities.
When we use LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY®, we create a safe space for the expression of dissent. Everyone builds artefacts, we ask questions into them, and they remain on the table. So those in power have more time to allow dissent to question their understanding of the challenges, and make it richer and more effective.
We have experienced many times how building models can facilitate the expression of opinions that do not concur with the dominant ones, and restore a dialog that is sometimes badly needed to produce the alignment you strive for.