Management of Tension

Management of Tension

I believe one definition of great managers is their ability to manage tension. Tension isn’t restricted to employees but extends to customers as placing them in tension is a sure of successful tension marketing. We have choices and the tension of making a choice is shared among all of us.

Let me start with an example and show how tensions interact to create threats and opportunities. Let me take on a horizontal axis the two opposites of We and Me. I work with a team I want the team to be successful with my conflicting desire to be successful myself. Would I prefer the We more than the Me? There is a tension between the extremes.


This is the Dimension of Relations between We and Me.

There exists another tension between sticking to my differences or join the similarities between the members of a group. If I wish to be authentic I need to stick to my differences at the expense of conflicting with the group and may be expelled for my deviant behavior.


This is the Dimension of Content. The tension exists between keeping the Me authenticity and following the similarities that glue the group members together.

Now it is time to join the two Dimensions of Relations and Content together.


The vital space is the space within the circumference. We may be within the boundary falling inside or outside the circumference. Inside the conference we have the following patterns.


Between Me and Similarities- seeking balance between being Me and keep Similarities. It is the exchange zone. It is the challenge to get inspiration from similarities while being Me.

Between Me and Differences- the tension to keep the balance between being Me and coping with Differences. It is recognizing the differences and still being Me.

Between We and Differences- the tension of keeping the balance between sticking together while respecting our differences. It is the need to feel safe in a stormy zone.

Between We and Similarities- the opportunity for group members to learn from each other. It is the realization the need for a shakeup to avoid similar thinking and adhering blindly to the group.

In every zone there is the tension of being in balance. If not, we shall be thrown outside the Circumference of Confidence. This what shall happen. It is the dreadful 4 Fs


Instead of getting inspiration from being Me while justifying similarities we get thrown out of the Circumference to end up in the first F- that is Flee. Many talents get bored and flee the organization because of being bored.

The challenge may turn into fight. This is the second F (Fight). The challenge offers the opportunity to learn and advance; instead it could turn the challenge into severe fight.

We need the structure to help the group members to advance together and be conducive to their interests and differences with others. If not, the third F will be the result and that is Freeze.

Similar birds flock together. That what shall happen if we all end up in having similar ideas. As much as we want differences, so we need similarities. It is the balance between the two.

The manager should assume the role of a ruler if people start to flee to put things in order. Or, if similarities overwhelm he can be an inspirator.

Likewise; the manager or leader needs to act as strategist or negotiator depending if in the challenge zone people are more towards Me or Differences.

In the Structure zone, the manager or leader needs to act like a warrior if people are drifted towards Me and a mediator if they are adrift towards differences,

In the dialogue zone the leader or manager needs to act as a joker if people are drawn to similarities than being the We and as a prophet if people are more of We than finding gluing similarities between them.

One last point is the need of virtual groups to have a supporting structure and to encourage dialogue. beBee as a platform communication does this job brilliantly. I tested my beBee webpage and got the following results.


Bravo beBee- you are doing a great job as proven by measurement.

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Ali 🐝 Anani, Brand Ambassador @beBee

Savvy Raj- I deleted this post few hours ago as all comments were post to last comment here were misdirected to another post

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

3 years ago #2

Lets pose a setting where a team member has now heard your proposal or ideas. You feel understood and that your presentation was inclusive. The team member is now preparing to question from their "Me". If the team member is captive by their own thoughts then their reply might be something like, "I'm Sorry i cant really see how that would work." A team member that is captivating their thoughts would state, "Help "Me" understand how you sense the new proposal would operate within my department, area or position." This offers us two positions to take within the paradigm of differences. Is it a narrative based automatic response, thoughts captivating the speaker or is the question by the team member attempting to captivate their own thoughts? Equally from the presenter side we have the same choices of view. Given the choice of moving towards "We" leaders understand that there are several team members battling this journey. Some do it well others seem to to struggle. The ones that struggle may be helped by introducing the captivating thought process. Helping a good team member release captivating thoughts so that they can "executive brain" place their thoughts is a wise skill to pass on.

Harvey Lloyd

Harvey Lloyd

3 years ago #1

The diagram is telling as we look at the surface of reflection from the outside. Given the parameters the diagram offers we can see ourselves inside the paradigm or outside. If we are outside then we now have a call to lead, depending on circumstances. If we are on the inside then we now must navigate the unknown, without the leader perspective view. Recently we have been challenged by management concerns that we are trying to dial in for better customer/client engagement. Your diagram is telling as we probe the various concerns. There is however an emerging thought. The diagram is reflective what is going on and renders the new question "Why". Our initial thoughts in addressing the team issues dealt with understanding. Is each team member understanding the vital roles of each member and the separate issues they are engaged. This seemed to be understood quite well. We have narrowed the issues down to thoughts, on the me side of the diagram. We have stated that either thoughts captivate the person or the person captivates their thoughts. We are recognizing more and more that the personal narrative tends to develop thoughts that captivate the action of an individual. This would imply we are victims of our environment. I would submit though that between similarities and differences we can captivate our thoughts with just self awareness.

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