Saturday, February 28, 2009

My Seven Rules When I Confront People

I have seven primary rules (...that I can think of at the moment) that I use when I confront people with their error or transgression. They are:

1. I try to remember that I have done or thought just badly as this guy if not worse.

2. Odds are pretty good that I don't see everything clearly and I need to hear the other side of the story/issue before I rush to judgement. Who knows, my opponent may even have something to teach me (this is especially true of subordinates and children).

3. Where possible, I attack the issue or mistake and not the individual. In fact, I usually try to treat the other guy as my ally against the mistake that he is a victim of. I try to use positive comments and reinforcment to highlight the good of the person while addressing the problem.

4. Understanding causes and motives is the key to unlocking the truth in most disagreements.

5. I do my best not to beat a dead horse.

6. When dealing with others I always abide by Hanlon's Razor: "Never attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by stupidity."

7. I am willing to accept headway or at least a partial victory. Resolving conflicts is a process which requires people to be exceedingly patient.

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