January 21, 2016

Winning arguments


There’s a way to deal with conflicts that isn’t confrontational and doesn’t raise heckles (unless someone’s actively looking for a fight).

The direct route through difficulty is to:

– Remind everyone what the shared outcome is supposed to look like.

– Expose the thought process that led you to your position, what worries you, what you like and don’t like.

– Encourage them to uncover their own thinking and the route that got them there.

In other words, focus on the end game and make the discussion as rational as possible.

So far so obvious.


– Deflate any tension by accepting all misunderstandings as your mistakes and taking any blame that’s looking for a home.

Here’s the thinking:

Agreeing terms on the contract, coming to a decision, dealing with the difficulty – whatever – is way more important that scoring points and winning he-said-she-said arguments.

Focus. Everything else is noise and distraction.

Accept any criticism, apologise with heart, and get back on track.

Skippy Strategy: It’s not about winning arguments, it about winning futures.