At the end of the 17th century, Sir Isaac Newton was born on Christmas Day in Lincolnshire, England.
Most of us have heard the story of how Newton was inspired to define gravity by watching apples fall to the ground on his family farm. But Newton also made significant advances in understanding the properties of light.
One of his discoveries, illustrated by Newton's Rings, (see picture at left), is wave interference. Wave interference can be used as a loose analogy of team dynamics.
There are 2 types of interference. Constructive interference occurs when waves reinforce each other, building a wave of even more amplitude. When waves oppose each other, the wave is reduced and is referred to as Destructive interference.
The waves of diversity in a team, just like Newton's observation, can be constructive. We don't have to be the same, we all bring our unique experiences and viewpoints. By embracing differences and aligning our efforts, we can see constructive interference at work in our interactions when we actually reinforce each other: building, growing and encouraging innovative thinking.
Consider your role in creating constructive waves of influence in your teams.
Mike Jones, CBAP, IIBA®-AAC