The price of abdicating your voice

America continues to live in the hangover of Trump’s victory.

The thread of the conversations with many American friends is that they are devastated and angry, with lots of loaded jokes about moving to Canada. The other key theme is that they didn’t vote.

‘While election officials are still tabulating ballots, the 126 million votes already counted means about 55% of voting age citizens cast ballots this year. That measure of turnout is the lowest in a presidential election since 1996, when 53.5% of voting-age citizens turned out,” according to CNN on November 12.

That’s 45% of voting age citizens that didn’t vote.

There is a price to pay for not showing up that extends beyond our own personal grief.

The dismal team were dysfunctional, they engaged in toxic behaviours with the lowest engagement scores in their organisation.

They blamed their leader, the environment and their lack of resources. Team members rarely made decisions, they rarely showed up.

They weren’t able to have constructive interaction preferring the more dramatic and explosive destructive interactions.

They were reactive rather than responsive.

They excluded rather than included others, it was easier to blame this way or to “win the battle” they were waging.

They only exercised their voice once a decision had been made that they were unhappy about, further fuelling anger and blame.

Borrowing from Al Gore, “The Inconvenient Truth” is that when we abdicate our voice, when we don’t vote on a decision, we have contributed to this decision by default.

We easily fall into a victim mindset, with distorted views that come at a high cost to our health and well-being, the health and well-being of our team and the overall health of the organisations that we work within.

Where do the residues of the dismal team’s behaviour and culture live in your team?

Are you willing to have this conversation today?

Pollyanna Lenkic is an author, coach, and speaker who works with leading organisations. She is an expert in building high-performing teams. Her structured approach delivers an uplift of 25% in team performance. She is also the author ofWomen & Success: Redefining What Matters Most At Home, At Work and At Play. To work with Pollyanna go to her website


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