The Art of Disruption

screen-shot-2016-10-18-at-11-11-01-amMost people think disruption is actually destruction … This causes them to immediately go into survival mode – the basic flight or fight response of the human. Therefore I can actually tell you I am going to disrupt you and the response will be the same as when I don’t tell you. The reality is, if I tell you I am going to disrupt you or even if I don’t tell you, the moment you sense the unknown you assume survival mode. This causes you to defend yourself physically or mentally. Mentally  you will start defending the belief that you have about something, regardless of whether you know the subject well or even what the truth is regarding the subject.

More importantly, disruption causes all our senses to go into high alert and this is exactly why disruption becomes a powerful tool to get the attention of the people you are trying to reach.

There are many ways of disrupting, it could be the questions you ask or the way you engage others in conversation. What is important is did you get the attention of your listener?

Lets share different ideas of how disruption works for us.

About RichSimmondsZA

Retired but still Disruptive
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2 Responses to The Art of Disruption

  1. I often find myself at conferences, biting my tongue, not asking bold questions that I am almost certain that the speakers don’t have the answers to – because in my view that would just antagonize them – I would say that the challenge is finding the balance, to not over think it and not to tone it down too much, and perhaps getting the timing right.

    I kind of came up with a rule of thumb – what is the worst that could happen, and for how long could it affect me? I would then wait that long before I reconsider whether it is still relevant. Even if it means waiting until the same conference, the next year, if at all – some things are also perhaps not worth saying. But some things you can get away with. I guess it’s an art, rooted in your gut and tied to your confidence.


    • RichSimmondsZA says:

      Coenraad yes indeed as you say it is always a gut feel. Sometimes however we need to disrupt to provoke thinking or we will find we are making excuses in our minds for other people. This decision will not cause growth in any of our lives. Disruption is tough indeed.


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