Tuesday, September 09, 2008

On Being Direct

Candor. The special trait that can cure societies ills.

Classic philosopher Immanuel Kant spoke to candor and being direct quite regularly. He believed that not being frank or candid was actually about self-interest, which in effect made your own life easier.

He further saw that people were more often shown not to be candid because they lived in the microcosm of the very moment they were living rather than seeing how their lack of candor affected the overall relationship with someone in the long term. people basically worried they would alienate someone if they gave feedback which wasn't good. Kant argued that because they didn't speak openly and with candor, basically that they weren't able to give feedback for fear of hurting someone, that their lack of action was actually destroying trust, and because of that, they were actually destroying society!

Society. Not that relationship but the fabric of our society.

If only Kant could see us now. How rare is the person that gives direct and honest feedback? Businesses, teams, partnerships all require the ability to be candid in order for them to function properly. The speed, or lack there of, required to find resolution of problems or new ideas is directly related to one's ability to accept and give feedback. It is directly related to the ability to be candid. To shoot straight and tell it like it is.

Being candid should be something we as a society exalt. Instead we avoid being candid thinking we are solving the problem by not dealing at all. All the while the problems stay and increase in scope.

Dealing with relationship issues candidly and head on is the only way forward. It isn't easy but when it comes to success, what is?

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