The expression of dissent is a common aspect in most organizations. On one hand, dissent is viewed as a negative aspect that bears the potential of causing negative implications on organizational performance (Jetten & Hornsey, 2011). Hence, it would be rational to control such an occurrence. On the other hand, organizational dissent morphs as a subliminal way of imposing control over the employees’ voice (Islam & Zyphur, 2005). Stifling workers from expressing themselves eventually leads to the derivation of employee silence within organizations. In fact, Bisel and Arterburn (2012) view this as the refusal by employees to convey any disconcerting insight to management. Personally, I have experienced this form of silence in a variety of settings. For this purpose, I will use the context of my family as a fair illustrative platform. One of the experiences that I had occurred as an outcome of a conflict between my parents and I. Even though I was correct based on evidence, I was still inclined to be silent in order to prevent further disputes. From a scholarly perspective, various aspects influenced my decision. One particular aspect was the prediction of harm to oneself. According to Bisel and Arterburn (2012), workers refrain from expressing dissent in order to prevent repercussions that may affect them negatively. In this case, further dissent against my parents would have injured me emotionally. Despite this, barriers to dissent allowed to me to function in silence. One aspect that I employed involved binary thinking. According to Kassing (2011), employees are capable of disguising dissent via expression as consent. Personally, even though I was silent, I subtly disagreed from their decision by being disengaged from the process. Hence, even though I was silent, I managed to express dissent by subtly disagreeing with them.




Bisel, R. S., & Arterburn, E. N. (2012). Making sense of organizational members’ silence: A sensemaking-resource model. Communication Research Reports, 29(3), 217-226.

Islam, G., & Zyphur, M. J. (2005). Power, voice, and hierarchy: Exploring the antecedents of speaking up in groups. Group Dynamics: Theory, Research, and Practice, 9(2), 93-103.

Jetten, J., & Hornsey, M. J. (2011). Rebels in groups: Dissent, deviance, difference and defiance. Chichester, West Sussex, U.K: Wiley-Blackwell.

Kassing, J. W. (2011). Dissent in organizations. Cambridge, UK: Polity Press.

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