“You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist.” Indira Gandhi
What wonderful visual imagery there is in this common-sense quote, but let’s take it a little further and see if we can make use of its wisdom in another context. If we were to equate the clenched fist with an attitude, it would be one of closed mindedness and perhaps self-interest. In the business world, it would be called silo thinking—the kind of thinking that causes others to clench their fists in response. The result? There is no open discussion, no intellectual “shaking of hands.” This is an environment in which teams become internally competitive and self-destructive and no one achieves their individual or collective potential. It’s truly a shame, but it’s a reality I witness all too often. If you wait for the other people to unclench their fists first a lot of potentially productive time will be lost. The next time you’re in an interaction, either one-on-one, or in a group, ask yourself if your fist is clenched. That just might be the reason the other person’s is too.
Good luck on your journey!